It is that time of year to check out the Christmas lights on Hilton Head Island. I have lived here for 19 years and every year I drive around – usually with my dog – to check out the lights. We may be a resort island but we definitely have the holiday spirit. A must see of course is our famous Dove Street lights. Whether you drive it or walk it you enter a winter wonderland that is just amazing.
The story of Dove Street started 19 years ago when a baby girl was brought home and the neighbors started the tradition of putting up Christmas lights in celebration. But they don’t just decorate one house, but the whole street. You can’t tell where they start or end as they are high up in the magnolia trees and drape across the road and lights go across yards to make it look like you are inside a very special snow globe. This tradition has grown so much that through the years they have been able to donate over $12,000 and immeasurable toys and food to our local charity Deep Well. The neighbors of Dove Street (along with Santa and a Snowman) are out every night and talk to all people in the cars that come through and as they always get asked if they want money for electricity they ask that people make a donation to Deep Well instead. Another special part of the tradition is that when the lights go up in early December they get members of PEP (Programs for Exceptional People -a local organization for adults with development and intellectual disabilities) to help with the decorating.
That isn’t the only place for lights as you can cross over North Forest Beach and continue around the other side of the street and find some homes that have really done it up. Coligny Plaza probably has the best commercial display. I also saw a lovely neighborhood off of Point Comfort that has really gone all out as well as parts of the Folly Field neighborhood. A couple of years ago I believe our Fire Stations had a competition with the help pf the local Rotary chapters to see who could have the best decorations. Ever since then, Fire Station 3 next to First Presbyterian on 278 has more and more elaborate decorations. I also want to do a special shout out to the owners of house in Port Royal that backs up to Hwy 278. For as long as I can remember they have always decorated the house and surrounding pine trees in such a beautiful way that if they ever sell, I hope they have it in the contract it has to be decorated that way because it wouldn’t be Christmas if they didn’t.
I have more neighborhoods to check out so I might add more to this but for now I wish everyone a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! And I hope everyone is having a happy holiday whether they celebrated Hanukah or have Kwanza to come.