Christmas light display on Garris Road to open tonight | News | The Press and Standard

by | November 24, 2016 5:00 am

Last Updated: November 23, 2016 at 8:26 am

Seventeen years ago, Pat Garris of Williams decided creating a Christmas light display in her yard would be a great thing to do for her grandchildren — and a tradition that would carry over for her future great-grands.

Thanksgiving night, the display will open for its 17th season at dark, and all of Colleton County is invited to share in the Christmas spirit.

The light show will be open Monday-Thursday from 6-10 p.m. and Friday-Sunday from 6-11 p.m. through Christmas. The display is visible driving by on Garris Road near Williams. Visitors who want a closer look may park on the road and walk through.

Something new this year is a Christmas shed, filled with a village and Santa Claus. Donation boxes will be set up in the shed and at the road to accept donations to help Garris’ great-grandson, J.P. Hodges, who is autistic and needs a service dog — a $20,000 expense that his parents, Jordan and Nicole Hodges, just can’t afford. Donations, which are appreciated but not mandatory, will be collected each night.

Through the years, the display has expanded as Garris saw different characters and ideas she wanted to add to her display. She drew the designs, then handed them over to her husband, David, who welds an iron frame for the lights.

Then about three months before Thanksgiving, the family begins setting up the display.

Pat saw the lights on James Island and in the gardens in Orangeburg and decided her family could do that too. “A lot of people can’t go that far to see the lights, so we decided to do them around here,” she said.

And, of course, her great-grandchildren — Kaydee, Connor, Abby, Kaylee and John David — are thrilled. “When we get all those kids together, you can’t stop them,” said granddaughter Victoria Garris.

To get to the lights, go through Bells Crossroads (intersection of Highways 64 and 21) and turn right by Sykes Savannah Church just past the fire station on Highway 212. Go about two miles and bear left at the fork in the road. The display will be on the left.

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