For the past seven years, organizers of the annual Christmas Light Show have been spreading holiday cheer around the Jersey Shore.

What's so great about the Garden State? Let us know about a group or organization using the form at the end of this report

The Christmas Light Show in Wall, NJ (Facebook)

The event started as a three-man operation, on a whim, hoping to have some holiday fun, Co-Founder Brian Brateris said.

This now yearly tradition has grown from the original idea by Brian, his brother, Dan, and a friend, into a full-blown spectacular light and music show that more and more people flock to annually.

"Last year, we had about 10,000 people come to the show, so it's been a wild ride," Brateris said.

The Christmas Light Show takes place at the Epp residence, which is located at 2702 Woolley Road in Wall. This year's edition will run on three nights: Friday, December 13th, Saturday December 14th, and one week later on Sunday December 22nd. Each night's shows are free, beginning at 7:00 p.m. and 8:30 p.m., and running about 25 minutes.

So how has the show constantly grown in size and population at a residential site without any complaints?

"I guess the neighbors kind of grew with the show, as well, because I think we've integrated as a tradition in the local area," Brateris said.

Wall Township Police will be present to control parking and traffic, with organizers urging visitors to leave at least 40 minutes to park and walk to the show.

Production for the show began in mid-October, The final installation will have over 1000 individual strands of lights, over 80,000 bulbs, pyrotechnic effects, concert lighting, color changing lights, and robotic effects all synchronized to Christmas music.

"We just want to do our best and spread Christmas cheer," Brateris said.

Most importantly, while the show is free, donations are being accepted to benefit Challenged Youth Sports, which is a recreational sports program for children with disabilities. The annual show has raised nearly $30,000 for the Lincroft-based charity.

Another added twist for this year's event will be performances by singer Chris Pinnella, of the Trans-Siberian Orchestra, which will serve as a half-time of sorts between the two shows on December 14th and 22nd.

The production crew of the Christmas Light Show includes:

  • Daniel Brateris, Electrical & Computer Engineer MS, 28, Lake Como, New Jersey
  • Brian Brateris, 26, Lake Como, New Jersey
  • Trevor Ferguson, Electrical & Computer Engineer MS, 27, Bridgewater, New Jersey
  • Mike Roberti, 27, Belmar, New Jersey
  • David Lippman, 27, Bridgewater, New Jersey
  • Matt Pinnella, 23, Wall, New Jersey
  • Ryan Epp, Electrical and Computer Engineer BS, 25, Wall, New Jersey

"We've been blessed with an overabundance of Christmas spirit, and that's something that it gets even better when you share it," Brateris said. "That's been our philosophy along with the show."

Get further event details by visiting The Christmas Light Show website and Facebook page.

More Good News

The New Jersey Department of Human Services and New Jersey Department of Children and Families

Over 200 handbags were donated to women living in emergency shelters from "Handbags of Hope, a collection drive run by the New Jersey Department of Human Services (DHS) and New Jersey Department of Children and Families (DCF).

The bags, all donated by state employees, were given to HomeFront and Womanspace, two non-profit agencies serving women in crisis. "In the urgency of escaping an abusive living situation, women are sometimes forced to leave behind their purse containing important personal items and belongings," said DCF Commissioner Allison Blake.

Domestic violence victims in need of assistance can call the New Jersey Statewide Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-572-SAFE.

Family Service Association

Family Service Association (FSA) is teaming up with a number of community members in South Jersey for its annual gift drive.

People can donate unwrap gifts to help South Jersey's children and families by dropping off items at Fulton Bank, ShopRite, Spencer's Gifts, Kid Academy and The Borgata Casino & Spa through Dec. 18.

Gifts needed include toys, books, handheld games and gift cards. To learn more, visit FSA's website.