Almost everyone loves Christmas time with all the lights and decorations that people put on their yards and houses. Many adults remember when they were young, counting all the houses with lights on the way to Grandma’s house or even to the grocery store at night with their parents.
In 2007, Terry and Deb Toews decided to do more than just put up the normal traditional lights that everyone else did. Deb saw something spectacular on YouTube where a house had their Christmas lights dancing to the music. Then she showed Terry and he was mesmerized and asked her, “How did they do that?” Actually, it didn’t matter how they did it; they were going to do it, too. After a lot of research and classes soon their Christmas lights were going to be different compared to anybody else’s in their neighborhood. Every year for six years they added a few more lights and, in 2012, they connected their next-door neighbors’ (Randall and Jill Butler) house lights.
In 2014, when their display was all set up, Deb and Terry once again took a couple chairs across the street and became spectators. For several nights, they sat and enjoyed their display while chatting amongst themselves and with their neighbors. Eventually, the all-important question was asked: “This is awesome, but what are we going to do next year? What would make a bigger impact, more lights on our house or some of our neighbors joining us by synchronizing their lights to our music?” Deb had shown Terry several videos on YouTube that showcased multiple homes their Christmas lights all synchronized and suggested they do it too. They knew it would be a big under taking but it was so cool! As they talked to neighbors and visitors that year, they came to the consensus that involving more houses was the answer.
In early 2015, they invited everyone on their street to a meeting to lay out their vision and give them information. They hoped 3 or 4 of them would be interested. By the end of the meeting, they had 8 confirmations with another 2 possible. Within a week, they were up to 12 confirmed and the other 4 were interested (and joined soon thereafter). Now, all 16 houses on the block have put up lights and are connected to Deb and Terry’s programming wirelessly. As the neighbors talked about raising money for the equipment, it was suggested that they become a non-profit organization. As they researched the idea, it became more apparent that it was a necessary step to ensure proper organization and accountability. They started “Clovis Festival of Lights at Ladera Ranch” in February of 2015 and decided to call their Christmas event “Santa Claus Lane”.
2015 was the first year that all of the houses on the 3100 block of Indianapolis Avenue had their lights synched together.
In 2016, one of the neighbors on Norwich approached Deb and Terry about joining in the fun. After several neighborhood meetings with the new neighbors, it was agreed that a total of 19 houses located on Norwich and Maine would join the show. This brings Santa Claus Lane to a total of 34 participating homes.
The Board of Directors of Clovis Festival of Lights at Ladera Ranch hope you enjoy Santa Claus Lane!