Fostering the Holidays: Booneville family spreads Christmas cheer with festive light show – Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal
BOONEVILLE • As the COVID-19 pandemic forced Mississippians inside and canceled events, Aaron Foster had an idea to spread Christmas cheer.
He’d always put up Christmas lights each year, but 2020 would be different.
“I had this idea of using Smart LEDs and getting them to where they can dance to music,” Foster said. “When COVID happened, I thought, there’s no better time to do it.”
He’d conceived a way to “Foster” the holidays, but had no clue how popular his Christmas show would become.
“I couldn’t imagine how many people came to see it,” Foster said.
The first full weekend in December, he and his family walked outside and couldn’t see the end of the lines of cars on both sides of the highway in front of their home.
Bigger and brighter
Foster, a group manager for Toyota Mississippi, was determined to make his family’s light show bigger and brighter in 2021, and the Christmas show has already proved to be larger in terms of crowd size and the number of lights.
The Fosters estimate more than 1,000 cars drove by to see last year’s show between Halloween and Christmas. The volume they’ve seen so far this December suggests they’ll easily surpass that.
“We’re expecting it to be a lot bigger this year,” Foster said.
Speaking of bigger, the display itself has more than quadrupled in size. In 2020, the Fosters used around 12,000 LED lights to create their elaborate show; this year, it’s 50,000.
More than 50,000 lights illuminate Aaron Foster’s Booneville home as part of his family’s elaborate Christmas display on Dec. 7, 2021. A homemade digital video board, affixed to the front of the home, serves as a central focal point of the “Fostering the Holidays” Christmas lights show.
“We doubled the amount of 12 millimeter lights, the big bulbs, that we have,” Foster said. “There’s a lot more lights this year.”
Along with the lights, Foster has added a homemade digital video board to show custom photos and videos that accompany the lights show.
The board, which consists of multiple 11-by-16-inch P10 LED panels he put together, serves as a central focal point throughout the show now, especially for children.
“A kid’s attention span is only so long,” Foster said. “They like the lights, but this keeps their attention so much longer because they have something always changing.”
When and Where to See The Lights
The Christmas show runs from Dec. 1 through Dec. 25 from dark until 10 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, and dark until 12 a.m. Friday and Saturday.
The “Fostering the Holidays” Christmas light show is located at 1609 W Chambers Drive, Booneville, MS 38829. Updates are posted to the “Fostering the Holidays” Facebook page and fosteringtheholidays.com.
Making a Facebook page and website for “Fostering the Holidays” has also helped grow the show’s audience. People across Northeast Mississippi know about the Fosters’ display because of their online presence.
Despite the grandeur …….