By Janet Cruz
For those Lake Havasu City folks who have finished their Christmas decorating – Do you have your home on the RiverScene Magazine Lights of Havasu Map yet?
Two local residents got to decorating earlier this year just in time before the holidays and before the Lights of Havasu RiverScene Magazine contest, which will begin judging on December 15.
“Christmas at Mom’s House” Ellen Van Rossum Home
For those who drive by Ellen Van Rossum’s house on the corner of Pepperwood and Highland Drive, they will find classic music synced to holiday lights. There are poles and strings of lights that resemble small snowballs, along with a 10-foot mega tree with a metal base complete with a custom-made star created by Van Rossum’s son.
“We go through tons of material and tons of zip ties to attach so many things,” said Van Rossum. “If our design had to have a theme, I would say my son calls it ‘Christmas at Mom’s House,'” she said.
It usually takes about two weeks for Van Rossum to get the display up and running. Lots of troubleshooting is involved. The house is also filled with snowflakes made of plastic material. Ice blocks that have lights inside of them to resemble real glowing ice. Songs you may hear as you drive by are “Candy Cane Lane”, “Silent Night” and good old “Mr. Grinch”.
“My son, who now lives in Colorado Springs, designed it all back in 2019. He came down to Havasu to help measure everything and helped me program all the music,” said Van Rossum. Every year, I try to get the lights up.
Van Rossum’s son also decorates houses in Colorado and is often asked to feature his own house where he currently lives in shows such as “The Great Christmas Light Fight” on ABC television, and other news outlets. However, he likes to keep a low profile according to mom. He hand builds and designs not only his mom’s house but a lot of his neighbors houses too.
“Christmas Gone to the Dogs” Aiden Kurth Home
On 3010 Ironwood Drive, the Kurth house features a musical light display designed and put together by 15-year-old Havasu resident Aiden Kurth. The display features dogs displayed out front, with modern and classic holiday music. His display involves around 20,000 lights that cover the whole yard, the entire roof and all his displays.
“I have always been inspired by Christmas lights shows. I always wanted to do them myself,” said Kurth.
He began setting up the first week of November to ensure all lights and music are in sync and working smoothly before the holidays. He is also partnering up with R& R Sanctuary, a local nonprofit for elderly and special needs animals, and said he is also planning a fundraiser.
“Half of the proceeds we get would go to the nonprofit and the other half toward making the Christmas light display even bigger each year,” he said.
Kurth loves all things engineering and has aspirations to one day work for Space X. Donations are accepted with half of all monies received going to R&R Pet Sanctuary.
If you would like to see these houses and many others, visit www.riverscenemagazine.com and click on the Lights of Havasu Map.