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Christmas displays light up Vanceboro

By Amber Roberts
Published On: Dec 05 2013 11:14:25 PM CST
VANCEBORO, CRAVEN COUNTY -

Drivers will have some extra light to help them see at night when driving through Vanceboro.

The town has two exhibits that attract people from all over Eastern North Carolina

One of these displays is located at 6050 Highway 17 North. The guy who operates it is Travis Wetherington. The display has been around for more than 30 years. Wetherington's mother, who died back in 2002, started the tradition. When she passed away, he decided to keep it alive.

"If I weren't doing this, I'd just be sitting in the house watching TV," Wetherington said. "We welcome any and all.  It's here for everybody's enjoyment. Merry Christmas."

This Christmas gift comes at a price, however. The display which cuts on when it gets dark and is on for hours into the night, which affects Wetherington's electricity bill.

"During this month it can get into the thousands," Wetherington said.

To help ease the cost, Wetherington has a donation box. He says while the exhibit is free, people donate as they come. Without the donations, Wetherington would not be able to do this.

Miles down the road is another light exhibit, this one run by a guy named Mike Purser.

"I bought a string of lights back in 2005 and I got hypnotized," Purser said. After buying those lights, he decided to start his light display. "It's a never ending hobby."

Purser says his display is different from others, because his lights are synchronized with music. People can park across the street, turn their radios to 100.1 and watch how the lights blink along with the musical beats.

Purser says he likes to interact with people who come out to watch.

"If I catch wind that you're out here, and you have kids with you, I'll bring you a candy cane," Purser said. "So don't get scared and run off when I come out the front door."

Purser's display is free to the public as well. He says he loves doing this for people..

"I enjoy seeing people enjoy what I do," Purser said.

These displays will stay up through New Year's day. After that, operators say it could take anywhere from weeks to two months to take down all the lights.