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Christmas Light Show

Family decorates home with 20,000 lights set to music

Christmas lights have always fascinated Tim Peebles.

“I’ve always enjoyed it, whether they are static displays or set to music like are ours,” Peebles said. “Many people have hobbies, but mine is Christmas lights.”

The Peebles family lives almost halfway between Nanceford Road and County Road 55, just outside the city limits of Hartselle, and drivers make their way each night of the Christmas season to see the light display they have entitled Peebles Family Christmas.

This light display is like no other in this area. The lights flicker and flash to a soundtrack broadcast on a low-powered FM radio frequency.

In fact, Tim has an entire electrical breaker box just for his light display and a computer program that allows him to synch the lights to a 17-song playlist on 93.5 FM, which can only be picked up within a quarter of a mile from their home.

To plan for such a display, he and his wife, Heather, must begin planning a year in advance.

“We start after Christmas when we hit all of the after-Christmas sales,” Heather said. “We’ll start buying lights then and start preparing for next year.”

While Heather isn’t into Christmas lights as much, Tim said her hobby of value shopping works with his hobby.

“Our hobbies really work together,” Tim said. “I put up the Christmas lights and she goes and find the bargains. There’s no way you can do what we do if you’re buying everything all full price.”

The Peebles, which are in their second year of doing this kind of Christmas light display, turn on their light display on Thanksgiving night and leave them on through the weekend following New Year’s Day. Tim said he almost didn’t make the schedule this year.

“I got a really late start on it this year,” Tim said. “We almost didn’t make it, but I put up our final decorations at 11:45 p.m. on the night before Thanksgiving. I’m never going to cut it that close again.”

The Peebles also did a special tribute during the Hartselle High School football team’s run to the Class 5A state championship. On the week of semifinals and the championship week, the Peebles only turned on their red and white lights and had a playlist of songs played by the Hartselle High School marching band.

“We had a CD from several years ago of the Hartselle High School band playing some of their songs for the team,” Tim said. “We only did three songs, but we wanted to show our support for the team. We’re planning to do it again next year.”

Tim said his playlist includes 17 songs, most of which are by the Trans-Siberian Orchestra. And that list is continually being tweaked.

“We’ll be watching our show with the kids and (Heather) says ‘that song’s too slow’ or ‘I don’t like it’ and we’ll go in and change it,” Tim said. “And you know, she’s probably right. There’s someone out there thinking that same thing. So we’ll go back and change it. That’s what we’d like to hear people tell us because we’re always wanting to make it better.”

The Peebles split up the long playlist to make it easier for people to stay and watch. Instead of having an hour show, they have split it into two 30-minute shows that will be shown on back-to-back nights.

On any given night, Tim said they may have 30 cars pull off the road and park.

However, if you want to park and watch the show, Tim asked drivers to pull completely off the road and keep your parking lights on. He also asked not to block his neighbors’ driveways.

“Our neighbors have been great to work with,” Tim said. “They’ve been very patient with us and haven’t complained about our light show.

“We don’t want our light show to cause an accident,” Tim added. “That’s the last thing we want. So please make sure if you park that you keep your parking lights on and turn off your headlights if you can. We just want it to be as safe as possible.”

For more information on the Peebles light display, log on to


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