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December 08, 1995 - Image 12

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1995-12-08

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

l2A -- The Mic

higan Daily - Friday, December 8, 1995L O C ALA T
TM LIGHI LASERSAND PIZAOFCRSM

Ann Arbor light display
draws crowds from
Michigan, the Midwest

By Megan Schimpf
Daily Staff Reporter
Blue and green lasers beckon visitors
from places far away, while 800,000
little lights attract people from nearby.
The Christmas Light Display draws
thousands nightly to Domino's Farms,
where lights dance in the darkened skies.
"We drive by here on the way to see
family and we always see it and say,
'We should come to see it,"' said Roxane
Miller of Beverly Hills, Mich., who
brought her family to see the display.
Domino's Christmas Light Display,
one of the largest
light shows in the
Midwest, is a tra- Sj
dition for many t
people in Ann Ar-
bor and southeast Christna
Michigan. For 2
1/2 miles wind-
ing around the
pizza company's the fun #
world headquar-
ters, visitors see n do .
lighted religious
figures and
scenestracing the Beverly Hills,
story of the birth
of Jesus.
The display is open from 6-10 p.m.
every night until Dec. 31. The
minimum donation is $5 per car. The
proceeds, minus expenses for the show,
are given to more than 130 charities
throughout southeast Michigan. More
than $250,000 has been donated in the
last two years.
An arch of snowflakes and angels
ushers each car onto the path, while
wise men and shepherds, following the
biblical tale, travel toward the nativity
scene.
A 40-foot Santa Claus kneels at the
cradle of the baby Jesus in another
scene while a choir sings in front of a
stained glass window on the other side
of the road.
"I think it creates the spirit of Christ-
mas for people," said Helen D'Sa, an
LSA senior who volunteered at the
show. "It has a Christian orientation
about it, and that's what the holiday is
really about.

U
S
14
S
N

"It helps people to celebrate the holi-
day season and bring the joy of Christ-
mas."
Scott Lorenz, director of Christmas
Celebration, a non-profit organization
created to organize the display, said the
show is the largest religious light show
in the country.
"It's out of this world," Lorenz said.
"The laser beam is bouncing all over
the place - it's pretty amazing. People
love it. It's really something."
Domino's Pizza donates the use
of the lights to Christmas Celebra-
tion in order to
raise goodwill in
Otrfthe community,
said Joanne Em-
ery, operations
manager for
Christmas Cel-
o allebration.
"The corpora-
.9nVO o; tion wants to give
something back to
the community
and at the same
Roxane Miller time spread the
lich., resident true story of the
birth of Christ,"
Emery said.
In its fourth consecutive year, the
light show has grown beyondjust lights.
The laser show, new this year, can be
seen from 20 miles away. The beams
sweep around the grounds and into the
sky.
While most light shows usually keep
visitors in their cars, Domino's Christ-
mas Light Display also includes a in-
door creche show, which features many
different nativity scenes from the col-
lection of Domino's Pizza CEO Tom
Monaghan.
Visitors can also walk through the
Celebration of Trees, a hallway lined
with Christmas trees professionally
decorated with themes from sports
equipment to angels to dogs to Santa
Claus.
Nightly entertainment includes ma-
gicians, and a live Nativity Scene on
Friday and Saturday nights.
And, of course, there is pizza for sale.
"Where-else can you go to see Christ-

Domino's Farms, located in Ann Arbor, is bright with Christmas lights and decorations which the public can visit for a small fee.

mas lights and eat pizza at the same
time?" said Jeff Miller.
The light display draws people from
across Michigan, Lorenz said.
"It's just the thing to do at
Christmastime," Roxane Miller said.
"You try to do all the fun things you can
do."
D'Sa said she saw people of all ages
at the display.
"Most people are really impressed
with the atmosphere and the decor," she
said. "A lot of people tell their friends
about it - that's why it's so popular."
Mark and Kim Slotnick of Ypsilanti
brought their 2-year-old son Christian
to see the lights.
Christian knew what he came to see.
"Santa Claus," he said, a huge smile
reaching across his face. "Baby Jesus."
The light display attracted about
40,000 cars last year and Lorenz said

f You Go
How to get there: Take Plymouth Rd. west to Earhart Rd. and turn left.
Follow the signs and the lasers to the entrance of the show.
Dates and times: The show is open from 6-10 p.m. nightly from now
until Dec. 31. There are special activities on Friday and Saturday
nights.
Cost: The minimum donation is $5 per car. The proceeds, after
expenses, will go to more than 130 local charities..
Refreshments: Pizza and drinks are available for sale inside.

Ann Arbor Township supervisor. "It's
no longer a problem."
The residents came to township meet-
ings to complain about the two-lane
road. It has since been widened to five
lanes.
"We did our best to alleviate the
situation," Langford said.
The residents' complaints were not
the reason the show was not put on for
several years, Langford said.
"I think it was a matter of econom-
ics," she said. "It's very expensive to
put on."
The Christmas Light Display is also
reaching beyond Ann Arbor. Using the
World Wide Web, users can send
cyberspace Christmas cards featuring
scenes from the show and learn more
about the light display. The Christmas
Celebration home page is http://
christmas. branch. con.

the totals for this year were higher so
far. The high volume of traffic caused
.problems for residents in the area of
Domino's Farms in the past. The dis-
play was run by Domino's, not Christ-

mas Celebration, for several years in
the 1980s, provoking complaints about
traffic.
"It was before Plymouth Road was
widened," said Elizabeth Langford, the

I k

304 S. State St., two doors South of Liberty - 9983-3480
CHRISTMAS SPER SLE!. *PIECU!*OLY UTIL DEC 4
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