By Dawn Hensil
Christy Sears gets excited when she sees homes decorated for Christmas. So she decorates her home as well, hoping to bring some of that joy to others.
Sears did such an impressive job creating a bright and colorful display this year, she won Shinnston’s residential light decorating contest.
“I wasn’t even going to enter my name into the contest,” she said. “I just love decorating. My sister signed me up. I guess I owe them some of my winnings.”
For many, it’s a yearly tradition to drive around looking for lights. This year, the City of Shinnston decided to reward residents and businesses for going above and beyond to make the season more bright.
City officials decided to hold a contest to select the best Christmas lights in the community. Residents registered with the city to be considered.
The city awarded three winners during the contest. The other winners were Jerry Toth in second place and Steven Cain in third. All were awarded a prize of a gift card, ranging from $25 to $100 in value, for their efforts. There was also one business winner, the office of Dr. Robert W. Powelson, an optometrist.
“Shinnston really stepped up their game so I really didn’t think I would win. My house is small but I try to make the best of it,” said Sears. “It’s definitely my happy place.”
Sears said she has decorated every year for many years.
“I decorate for Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas and Valentine’s Day,” she said. “I lived in South Carolina for ten years and it never really gets dead and ugly there because they don’t have real winter. So when I came back here I wanted to keep it pretty year round.
Plus I know how excited I get when I see other decorated houses so I hope I can bring some of that happiness to others. There were so many beautiful houses this year.”
Sears said she is flattered to have won.
“I was very excited that I won,” she said. “More excited than I thought I’d be.”
She plans to decorate again next year.
“I have some more ideas for next year that I didn’t get to do this year,” she said. “So I’m not preparing for next year but I’m always brainstorming.”