Christmas display lights up for a good cause - ABC6 - Providence, RI and New Bedford, MA News, Weather

Christmas display lights up for a good cause

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By Melissa Randall

mtoupin@abc6.com

100,000 twinkling lights, dancing to music. It's an annual sight in one Warwick neighborhood, six years running.

The display's creator gave us a sneak peak at what goes into making the elaborate display.

"It's a cross between a rock and roll stage show and an explosion in a bulb factory.", said Frank Picozzi.

If you think it looks cool now, just wait until the lights turn on.


Picozzi's Gristmill Road home in Warwick is undergoing a complete transformation, into what's become a Rhode Island Christmas tradition.
 
"It started as a hobby, but after a while people got wind of it."

The lengthy process to get the display ready is well underway. Picozzi began stringing the lights in mid-October.

"It takes about 250 hours. So I finish probably about a week, week and a half before Thanksgiving."

But the process begins much, much earlier.
 
"I have a 25-foot tall Christmas tree in my back yard on 4th of July because I'm practicing the programming on it."
 
Colorful bulbs cover nearly every inch of the front yard. Picozzi carefully checks each one for glitches as he goes...100,000 lights in all.

And running through it all... 3 miles of wire and extension cords.

"Tangled wires are the bane of my existence."

But that's not all. Picozzi programs the music, too, syncing it with the lights and bringing the incredible holiday showcase to life. It's an expensive hobby...
 
"I don't keep track on purpose. I'd really probably be horrified if I knew it."

But it's one the extreme decorate isn't willing to part ways with. The display doubles as a fundraiser for the Make-A-Wish Foundation, and draws in tens of thousands of people each year.

"That's a pretty good legacy to leave for a guy like me."

Picozzi will flip the switch the day after Thanksgiving.

(C) WLNE-TV 2013

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