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What time does your show start?


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This year we are doing a 16 house synced show- we had a meeting with the neighbors and some think starting at 530 is an issue for them to get home before traffic starts.  Thew board had a meting and decided on 530 giving 30 minutes for people to get home. We live on a cul-de-sac so there is only one way to get in.  So what time does your show start and why?  Do you see at lot of traffic at the beginning of your show or when?  Thank for your input  :-)

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How exciting to get such great participation from the neighbors!    Are you sure there will be a jam preventing owner access that early?     My show starts at 4:30 which is before dark.    There is no opening song and there are very few cars that ever arrive early and wait but usually I am not home to see.   I intentionally try to have very long hours.  There are a lot of repeat visitors so they know the routine.  People can see the posted schedule too and know to come off peak to avoid a jam.   Busiest 6:30 to 8:30 for families and 8:30 on for teens. 

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Two answers.  First for my year round landscape lighting.  The show is scheduled to start at 4:00 PM - however the show is dependent on a startup trigger.  The trigger is a light sensor that causes the show to start when it is getting dark.  At the beginning of summer, the show actually starts about 8:15.  In the dead of winter it starts about 5:00.  I do get an E-Mail to my phone when the show starts.

 

For my Christmas show, I start at 5:00PM.  It's not really dark, but that's when I start it.  Except for the weekend, I'm not home for the start.  Like the landscaping show, I get an E-Mail when it starts.  I run the show until 10:00 PM on Monday - Thursday, and until 11:00 on Friday - Sunday.  Christmas Eve and Christmas night I run until midnight.

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I also start mine at 5:30 pm. Traffic is not a problem at that time of the day. Like others have stated, it picks up from about 6:30 to 8:30.

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I control 4 homes and found it was easier to give the neighbors timers to start their static lights and power the controllers in their yards. That way the show starts if no one is home.

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How exciting to get such great participation from the neighbors!    Are you sure there will be a jam preventing owner access that early?     My show starts at 4:30 which is before dark.    There is no opening song and there are very few cars that ever arrive early and wait but usually I am not home to see.   I intentionally try to have very long hours.  There are a lot of repeat visitors so they know the routine.  People can see the posted schedule too and know to come off peak to avoid a jam.   Busiest 6:30 to 8:30 for families and 8:30 on for teens. 

 

Not sure if there will be traffic congestion that early but 2 neighbors are concerned about it and getting their cars into their garage after work.  Of course if they would have paid attention and showed up for all the meetings, we wouldn't need to be discussing this now.<vent>  We formed a 501c3 and are getting a lot of attention from news media.  This is the first year with all 16 houses, so not sure what to expect.  I did reach out to 2 other multiple house shows here in California and they did NO advertising and eventually it got to where people are waiting for the show to start.  So I appreciate your answers and can share them with the neighbors.  They were suggesting starting later- like 6pm but I think eventually it wont matter- they will be there waiting.

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Well, we, here on LOR expect videos of a 16 house sequence. How cool is that?

 

To answer your question though, 6-9 pm nightly, week of Christmas, 6-10. Most of our neighbors are cool with it all. I had only one time in 4 years of displays where a neighbor was blocked. Year before last I bumped it to 5:30 because folks were there waiting. Last year, there wasn't a need to and it stayed at 6.

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I think that to keep the peace I would offer to start at 6, evaluate traffic after a week or 10 days and then decide on 5:30 or keeping it where it is.  It's pretty easy to change start/end times, update website, etc. for a show so this isn't a decision you're locked in to forever.  Keep the peace and evaluate is my advice.

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I think that to keep the peace I would offer to start at 6, evaluate traffic after a week or 10 days and then decide on 5:30 or keeping it where it is.  It's pretty easy to change start/end times, update website, etc. for a show so this isn't a decision you're locked in to forever.  Keep the peace and evaluate is my advice.

 

Only problem is we already have advertising material and new media stating we will start at 5:30.  I think hubby is going to just have the neighbor call if they cannot access their home, he will hold traffic and allow them to come in.  There is more than one way to get to our street.

Well, we, here on LOR expect videos of a 16 house sequence. How cool is that?

 

 

 

Its Super cool- my neighbor has ordered me a drone video camcorder so as soon as I can get video- I will share for sures!

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I think it matters based on where you are on the planet as such. Here, I start mine at 5:30 and I do have a startup sequence that unless cars are out there at startup, they won't see them again...Santa Countdown, Minions decorating a tree and finally the Griswolds Intro. From then on, its the full show till 10Pm. If I was controlling several homes, timers to power things up would be perfect. I'm going to meet k6ccc for the first time in about two weeks and will need to ask him about his scheduling set up and how he controls that. Traditionally, I leave the controllers all powered up and running 24/7. I do shut down the computer and FM transmitter at night, restarting each afternoon around 4 to 5Pm or so. Schedule is programmed so I don't need to do anything else.

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We usually start our show at 7 PM. This is when we have the neighbors setup their camp chairs in the road and sidewalk to watch a 45 minute show. This is usually enough time for everyone to eat dinner and wander out. Aside from that we get very little traffic. I was thinking that when we aren't doing an actual show I could have a button so if a neighbor drives up and wants to see a couple of songs they could hit the button.

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Weekdays our show runs from about 5:30m (as dusk is taking over) until 11pm.  ON weekends I'll keep them on until midnight.  On Christmas Eve and New Years Eve they stay on until 1am.  We normally attend an 11pm Candlelight service on Christmas Eve so I started keeping them on until 1am so they would still be on when we got home from church.  I also have them on from 5:30am until 7:15 am every morning for the neighbors as they head to work.  They also run Christmas morning from 5am until about 9.  After that it gets harder to see them as daylight takes over.  

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We usually start our show at 7 PM. This is when we have the neighbors setup their camp chairs in the road and sidewalk to watch a 45 minute show. This is usually enough time for everyone to eat dinner and wander out. 

Wish people here could do that, but so far, its been way too cold out there for people to enjoy more than 2 or 3 songs at the most, then have to find somewhere to warm up.

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Since we have that stupid daylight savings time crap where I am, Halloween shows when I have them start at 7:30pm{still not dark} until 10pm Sunday~Thursday and 'til 11pm Friday and Saturday, with the show running 'til Midnight on Halloween night.    Christmas, when the time changes back to what I consider "normal", Christmas show starts at 5:30pm through 10pm Sunday~Thursday, 11pm Friday and Saturday.   Christmas Eve show runs through Christmas morning{musical lightshow will end at 2am, outdoor speakers are either turned off or down to very, very low at midnight}  I also run a daytime music only show for each holiday, the music only shows shuts down about 5 minutes before the first lightshow runs.   Then I run overnight animation sequences for each holiday after the last musical lightshow has ended until the daytime music starts.

 

So my schedules look something like this:

 

Halloween Day Music only ~ 7am - 7:25pm / 7 days a week

Halloween Animated Musical Light Display ~ 7:30pm-10pm Sun-Thu / 7:30pm~11pm Fri/Sat / 7:30pm-12:00am{midnight} Halloween night.

Halloween Overnight Animation  ~ 10pm-7am Sun-Thu / 11pm~7am~Fri/Sat

 

Christmas Day Music Only ~ 7am-5:25pm / 7 days a week

Christmas Animated Musical Light Display ~ 5:30pm-10pm Sun-Thu/5:30pm-11pm Fri/Sat / 5:30pm-2am Christmas Eve through Christmas morning

Christmas Overnight Animation ~ 10pm-7am Sun-Thu / 11pm-7am Fri/Sat

Edited by Orville
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Nice idea to have music during the day. But, here, I think the neighbors would revolt on me if I did any more than I am. I would like the music though. Now if doing this in a formal visitor area or town street, it would be fantastic to do just that...music during the day and lights to music at night.

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I normally start mine somewhere around 6:30pm at the start of the season. As the weeks go by I move to 5:30pm. I too live on a cul de sac. I know some of the issues you are running into for traffic. (Have a pic on my front page of the website - http://burtonchristmaslights.tk/ ) Have some suggestions for you;

 

1) I live at the last house BEFORE the cul de sac itself.  I have a sign to encourage cars to stop at my driveway (not blocking it) and wait. We only want three cars at a time in front of the house on the opposite side of the street. This keeps cars from backing up in front of the house (blocking the opposite side) and also opens up three driveways at the end of the street. Yeah, it does block a few drives up the street, but not normally. I can control this if I am directing traffic. I stop cars from going around if there are three in front of the house. This also allows the neighbors to come and go. If someone jumps out of line, I nicely tell them that we would have a lot of cars mad at me if I allowed them to cut. They now have to go get back in line if they want to see the show ;-)

 

2) I normally start getting a load of vehicles about a week or more in front of Christmas. That pic on my website is typical for that time period. Was taken on Dec.20th, about 3 houses down.  Here is what I had posted on my facebook account from Dec.20th;

5:30 to 6:30pm - Whole playlist that has been posted (all the videos posted)
6:30 to 7:30pm - Jing,Jing,Jing, All I Want For Christmas Is You, I Heard The Bells On Christmas Day, War Eagle, Let It Go
7:30 to 8:15pm - We drop "All I Want..." from the list
8:15 to 9:00pm - We drop "War Eagle" from the list
9:00 to 10:00pm - Let It Go and Jing,Jing,Jing

Keep in mind our full playlist was something like 35 to 40 minutes worth. 

 

3) Going back to directing traffic... I didn't give the folks a choice. Once the next "set" came up, they had to move on. Especially if there were more cars in line. So I REALLY pushed (talking with people that wanted to see more) to come early. Many nights I had cars lined up before the show would even start... and it was still light outside!  Crazy.

 

4) Traffic cones. I use these for my drive, my neighbors drive (with signs not to block) and also for where the cars pull up to in order to watch across the street. I also have a big traffic cone to put in front of the car to stop them from going on around the cul de sac. I use this while I am directing traffic alone.

 

Probably more info than you wanted. Just can feel your pain being on a cul de sac. BTW. I ALWAYS take a plate of cookies a day or so after Christmas to all of my surrounding neighbors. If they have a favorite chart, I make sure it is in the show. I also made sure my power on my radio station (yes, it is legal!) to powerful enough for the neighbor across the street to be able to watch AND hear it from her front bedroom. That tickles her when she has guests over ;-)

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Like Robert I too get a lot of traffic, including lines waiting at times. I'm in the cul de sac with one other house. In my experience traffic will be at it's worst when your local students are out of school fire the holidays. This is how things usually go for me.

Show starts at 6. Pretty calm with traffic.

By 630/7 it gets busy fire a couple hours.

Dies down by 9/10.

Like I said the busiest is when kids get out of school. The other buddy times are the two weekends before Christmas.

To me your case is not typical though with 16 houses. You probably will have many more busy days given the fact you have 16 houses working together.

I'm changing up my hours to accommodate myself and my neighbors. I'm doing a 545-630 then restart at 8-10 or so. Gives my family and neighbors a break. After 9 years going on ten it is needed.

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Thanks guys fro all your input!  Since we already have printed materials made up we will be sticking to the 5:30 start time this year.  Since this is the first year with 16 houses, we really dont know what to expect.  Cant wait to share some videos with all of you-  :-)

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Just make sure you and your neighbors have a good plan for traffic. That'd the key and volunteers to help with the volume and flow.

I'm assuming you'll have voiceovers too. I made a map using a screenshot from Google maps and posted it to our Facebook page. Got the idea from my friend Roger. Put in a few text boxes with info and some arrows.

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Amen on when the kids get out of school!  Not only do my students come, but they have to bring another car (load) with them because they can't all fit in one!

 

Oh... 16 houses. Missed that one!  Yeah you better have help! Lots of signs to direct traffic too. If you hit the news (especially in a big TV market), all bets are off. You better be prepared. Especially if competing TV stations get wind of it. That is a big deal with 16 houses. Oh... think about getting the local law enforcement to help or at least warn them. It will be a problem if you don't (unfortunately).

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I am a stones throw from central time so it doesnt get dark until 6pm. Show starts promptly at 6 every night. Show runs till 10:45 every weekday night, 11:30 on weekends. Week of Christmas it goes till at least 11 and sometimes midnight.

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