Effingham Tourism Director Jodi Thoele stopped by the station to talk about the upcoming Holiday themed events in the City. She spoke with News Director Tom Jamison about the Holiday Lights & Festive Sights competition and the Wonderland in Lights display in Community Park.
The City of Effingham and the Effingham Convention & Visitors Bureau have announced the second annual holiday light competition Holiday Lights & Festive Sights. All residents and businesses residing within city limits are encouraged to participate in the competition. This year the competition will have four categories. The four categories consist of the following: business, Clark Griswold, including excessive use of outdoor lighting and decoration, Classic Christmas, including an old-fashioned, traditional and nostalgic display and Reason for the Season, including a religious holiday display. Winners will be announced from each group.
Residences (and businesses) need to be completely decorated when nominated. A fellow citizen or the residence or business owner can nominate himself or herself. Nominations must be in by December 7th at noon. Call the Effingham Visitor Center at 217-342-5310 to nominate. After all nominations are made, official judges will narrow the nominees down to the top three in each category. The top three will then be voted on by the public. Nominees can be voted for online on the Effingham Convention and Visitor Bureau’s Facebook page: Visit Effingham, at www.VisitEffinghamIL.com or in person using ballots located at the Effingham Visitor Center (1505 Hampton Drive). Voting will be open December 11 – 17. Winners will be announced on December 18th.
The first place winner in each category will receive $250, with the business winner picking a favorite charity to donate the money. They will also receive a sign to be displayed in their yard through January 4, 2016. Every person that participates in voting for their favorite holiday light display will be entered into a drawing for two $100 gift cards to their choice. For more information on the Holiday Light Competition, please call 217-342-5310 or visit www.VisitEffinghamIL.com.
Staying with the Christmas theme, the Wonderland in Lights light display in Community Park will debut the night of Thanksgiving. The light display will run until Christmas night. Hours are from 5:00pm to 9:00pm Sundays through Thursdays and 5:00pm to 10:00pm on Fridays and Saturdays.
The annual drive-through display will feature a variety of lighted holiday scenes including reindeer flying, Santa coming down the chimney, a Nativity scene and a Gingerbread house.
Santa will visit the Wonderland in Lights display every Saturday to bring special presents to the children. The Wonderland in Lights is free, but donations are appreciated. For more information or to volunteer to collect donations, call 217-342-5310 or visit www.visiteffinghamil.com.