Brandano Displays, the company that started the Lights on the Lake display in Syracuse, has been contracted to bring 17 holiday-themed light displays to Irondequoit’s Camp Eastman starting this Friday, Dec. 7, for what is being called the Spectacle of Lights.
Each of the cabins in the camp will also be outlined in lights, and some trees will be decorated with more lights.
Brandano Displays, the company that started the Lights on the Lake display in Syracuse, has been contracted to bring 17 holiday-themed light displays to Irondequoit’s Camp Eastman starting this Friday, Dec. 7, for what is being called the Spectacle of Lights. Each of the cabins in the camp will also be outlined in lights, and some trees will be decorated with more lights.
The concept started, said Peter O’Brien, commissioner for Irondequoit Parks and Recreation, when Irondequoit American Legion Post 134 came to him last December with a financial donation for Camp Eastman.
“They (the Legion) have given money for the playground there in the past, but I wanted to take this (donation) and create something for the entire community.”
“Around the same time,” he added, “my own kids and I were tired of being ‘cooped up’ and we packed them up in the car and drove around the town looking at holiday lights! The Post agreed this (the light display) was a good idea.”
You will be able to simply drive your car through the display, or stop (there’s limited parking on the grounds) and walk around the displays and take part in related activities in the camp’s cabins.
“People will probably get more out of it if they stop and park,” said Katrina Hall, recreation supervisor for Irondequoit Parks and Recreation, explaining that the department wanted the event to have a bigger impact than just the lights.
There will also be a warming station with hot cocoa and coffee.
For his Eagle Scout project, Irondequoit teen Ian Dubock is organizing family-friendly activities during the event Dec. 7, 8, 15 and 21. He has been making his own carnival-style games, and will also be offering crafts and even cookie-decorating some nights.
A group that works with children diagnosed with autism is bringing a “sensitive” Santa, who understands the “calm” environment needed by many children with special needs, in from 6 to 8 p.m. Dec. 15.
Irondequoit resident Christine Kubida is organizing a big Family Night, possibly including sleigh rides, visits with Santa, snacks and more, for Dec. 22.
The Town of Irondequoit’s Department of Parks and Recreation has partnered with 13WHAM News to bring the Spectacle of Lights to the community this season. A portion of the proceeds from the event will benefit Golisano Children’s Hospital and additional donations will also be accepted for the hospital.
O’Brien stressed that no tax dollars are being used for the event, since the town has no budget for special events. It’s all being done with sponsorships and volunteers from various organizations. 13WHAM News is the event’s title sponsor.
Since Irondequoit Kiwanis is also in the midst of a campaign to raise $100,000 for the hospital, it is also partnering on the event and will be supplying volunteers.
The camp is well-equipped, power wise, to accommodate the show due to the Oktoberfest held there each fall, O’Brien said, adding that he hopes the Spectacle of Lights will become an annual event.
“It’s something affordable during the holidays,” he said. “For me, the stars really aligned on this.”