Hodges brings childhood dream to life with Christmas lights

Tucked back behind Tin Cup Road at 106 N. Redbud Ct., holiday seekers will find a musical holiday light show which will wow the child inside anyone.

“When we were kids, we would decorate the inside of our house, but we never did anything on the outside,” homeowner Jason Hodges said. “Mom and dad would put us in the car, and take us around to other houses, other towns, other communities. As a kid, I would always wanted to be in a house that people would come and look at.”

When Hodges purchased his first house, he added minimal outside lights. Over the eight years on Redbud Ct., Hodges has added new decorations each year.

With over 40,000 lights, including 3,000 on the rooftop, he said there is still room to grow. Now Hodges runs the lights on software, which gives him control over how the lights blink to the music.

While Hodges generally just puts decorations where they fit, he has dedicated a special spot for the Nativity scene next to the flagpole with a star on top.

Hodges has had to add to his power service for the Christmas lights.

With new technologies emerging all the time, Hodges has also purchased a computer-controlled music program that will allow him to pick and change the songs and add different light channels to change the display. To hear music, visitors will need to tune their radio to 88.1 when looking at Hodge’s design.

“I think there is a point when it becomes too much,” he said. “I think there’s a point when it becomes gaudy, and it doesn’t look good anymore. I’m not there yet.”

Hodges begins to take down the Halloween decorations on Nov. 1, and immediately begins to decorate for Christmas. Although he waits until after Thanksgiving to begin his light show, Hodges works on his decorations almost every day in Nov. He even takes a week off work before it gets too cold.

Throughout the year, the Hodges discusses the schematic of the design. The family purchases discounted lights and displays at the end of the holiday season.

For 2017, Hodges added four new songs to the playlist and a large arch that will “dance” to the music as it streams.

“Once you’re interested in doing light, you’re always thinking of new things to do, always thinking of new ways to make it better,” he said. “You may not have the time or money to do something this year, but if it’s something you’re passionate about, you’re always thinking about how it could be better the next year.”

While their power bill sees a surge in Dec., the Hodges spread out the payments throughout the fall to reduce the shock factor.

Neighborhood friends and children, along with many other in the Mahomet community drive by the Hodges’ house during the holiday season. Hodges said his children’s friends and community members ask about his light display throughout the fall months.

“Maybe it’s not the one with the most lights, but at least it’s enough to draw attention so that people see it,” he said. “I have a lot of light for (the Mahomet) community, and I want to add more.”

Three years ago, a boy and his mother came to Hodges door with an ornament, letting him know he has the best lights in Mahomet. Hodges has that ornament on his tree this year.

“That totally makes all the work worth it,” Hodges said.

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I may do it all, but I have not done it all.

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