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Saturday August 19th, 2017

Posted at 10:00am

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Light display in Amherstburg

The City of Windsor is considering adding a major Christmas display such as those seen in Amherstburg to Jackson Park this December.

A report going to City Council on Monday, August 28th at the request of Mayor Drew Dilkens outlines the cost associated with creating a signature lighting and event display throughout Jackson Park as a final celebration for Windsor 125 and Canada 150.

The City says that every year they receive many requests for such a display and after looking at several locations they settled on Jackson Park.

City Administration researched information and consulted with industry experts to determine what could be accomplished to present a signature destination holiday display and activities.

Ideas include the lighting of hundreds of trees fully wrapped in lights within the park on a circuit around the paved pathway perimeter. A huge 50’ to 60’ lighted tree could be placed in the centre of the sunken gardens, and a large display in the area near Tecumseh road at the entrance to the park, with giant reindeer and a Santa sleigh welcoming people to the event.

The trellis structure east of the sunken garden could be completely lighted with a large 144” wreath hung over the entrance as well as the pillars and overhead structure completely wrapped in lights. As you enter the sunken garden moving west, you could walk through a series of light tunnels and the entire space filled with lights and displays along the sides and interior beds.

In addition to an elaborate display of holiday lights, planned events such as horse and carriage rides around the park, arts and crafts, hot apple cider and hot chocolate booths, food vendors and fun for the whole family could be considered.

If council wishes to go in this direction, Administration recommends hiring a qualified team of professionals experienced in holiday lighting events and displays to plan and execute this project.

The total 2017 operating and capital cost of the proposed destination Holiday Lighting display in Jackson Park is estimated to be just under $3,000,000. This includes the upfront capital cost to purchase the displays, as well as the labour and equipment for the setup and take down of the displays, security, and programming.

Costs to set up and run the displays going forward are estimated at $300,000 as design work and ordering of materials will have already been
completed in year one.

The City also plans to continue some of the traditional locations of Christmas lighting such as Dieppe Park, Charles Clark Square, WFCU Centre Roundabout, Mackenzie Hall, Gino and Liz Marcus Recreation Complex, Willistead Manor, and the Gateways at Howard and Dougall Avenue.

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