Local man gets national recognition for displaying Christmas lights

PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WMBB) – Scott Fester, originally from Panama City, has been passionate about Christmas since he was a child. He remembers decorating his childhood home with his family and not wanting to stop.

“I remember I just wanted to go on and add more,” Fester said.

Fester has been doing extravagant light shows for six years now, and he’s been able to turn his passion into a Bay County vacation staple. Recently, the Fester Christmas Light Show was featured on ABC’s “The Great Christmas Light Fight”. Fester had the opportunity to compete for $ 50,000 and a light bulb trophy.

“Receiving the call was like a dream come true, I had always wanted to be on the show,” he said.

The episode of Fester aired on November 29 and will air on other platforms soon.

Fester’s display features nearly a million lights, and he said he’s starting to prepare for display in the summer.

Even though Fester didn’t win the grand prize, he said he wished he could compete again. He’s already planning on showing 2022, and Fester has said if the opportunity allows, he’d love to be on the show again.

“They’re having a competition for alumni of the show, so I’d love to participate. You must have over a million lights, so I want to do that and add more trees, ”he said. “No open spaces, just more lights.”

The display gained even more following after it aired on national television.

“We’ve had 10,000 people come and see it so far. A couple even came from Chicago just to see it, ”he said.

Last year the exhibit was at Fester’s home in Panama City, but this year it has grown so big it had to be given more space. It is located at Grace Presbyterian Church at 1415 Airport Road. It also has passage and passage elements.

The display has lots of interactive components, including photo opportunities with Princess Elsa and Santa, an s’more and hot chocolate bar, snow, and a passing igloo that brings the heat down. Fester has said he loves Disney, so the screen also contains synchronized music of popular Disney songs and Disney characters that light up.

The event is free to the public, however, the church will accept donations of $ 5 per person and $ 1 for s’mores and hot chocolate. The exhibition runs until January 5 and is open every evening from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. on weekdays and from 5 to 11 p.m. on weekends. For New Years Eve and Christmas Day, it will open from 5 p.m. to midnight.

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