SOUTHINGTON, Conn. (WTNH)– The massive “Lights on Lovely” display is dark after the homeowners in Southington were forced to pull the plug because it was causing traffic backup.
More than 50,000 bulbs pulsing and strobing to the music of Disney’s Frozen was originally put together to raise food for the local pantry, but neighbors complained and traffic became a problem, so police asked them to go dark. Delima Coviello lives across the street from the light show and was sad to see it go.
“We love it here and we are really disappointed that it’s not on,” said Coviello. “I love it and it’s ruining a lot of little kids Christmas’s, they look forward to it.”
Eight-year-old Caitlyn Matzonkai of Waterbury was disappointed to see the dark hole where the lights used to be.
“I was very sad when this happened becasue I wanted to see how the music was going with this and I like light shows,” said Matzonkai.
The only lights now at the house are the cancellation sign. To keep people away, the police have put up no parking signs all up and down the road so you can’t stop. Police say they are getting a little help from the rain. They hope that will keep people at home instead of out trying to see the lights.
Even though they are closed, people are stopping to get a glimpse of Frozen. Lianna Urso drove in from Naugatuck.
“I told my four-year-old; that is all she has been talking about all day, so I’m a little disappointed,’ said Urso. “She loves Frozen; that is all she wants for Christmas.”
The lights will be out for the rest of the holiday season, and the owners aren’t sure what they will do in 2015.
Full Facebook post announcing the cancellation of the lights:
“We are sad to say that we have decided that last night was the last night for LightsOnLovley this year, going forward the lights will be dark. We delivered the last of the donations to Community Services this morning.
It was not one thing, not the angry voicemail, not the posts or comments on line, not the veiled threats of legal action, not the belittling of the donations or the media circus this has created. It has just become too much stress and sleepless nights to continue on.
We have exhausted all options to keep this going. We reduced from 7 songs to 3 and finally to just one looping. We worked together with the SPD to reroute and keep traffic moving. We have posted multiple times on how visitors should respect our neighbors driveways and access. As moving the lights to another location is not an option at this time, the only option to keep the peace is to shut down.
While last night the traffic flowed really well, only backing up onto Frost a short amount, apparently this was not enough to keep everyone happy, stop the calls to SPD or keep the media away. We did not invite the press, they first show up with a local interest story, then returned last night to cover the resulting conflict that exposure had caused.
We really appreciate the support of the wonderful neighbors who stood behind us, as well as that of those who visited and donated. It was great to get to meet and work with some of SPD’s finest officers, who have for the most part being nothing but supportive and extremely helpful.
For those out there planning to visit in the next few days, we apologize for shutting down early. I know many of you have made it a family tradition to visit the lights around this time, often bringing family and friends from out of state.
At this point we do not know what this means for 2015. While we suspect that the Frozen song and resulting media coverage was a one time thing, its hard to predict what would happen next year. We would happily work with the town or other organizations on potential ideas for a better location, but the logistics of setting this up is not trivial.
Please continue to donate directly to Community Services on Norton St. We will leave the donation box out for anyone you would rather bring it to us. If you are not from Southington, then please take any donations to the local food banks in your towns.
As our reach to inform potential visitors of our shutdown is limited to the social media and website, please pass this along to anyone who you think could be planning to visit us. We would hate to have people drive from all over the state to just see a dark house.
While the season should be about thinking of others, especially the children, it seems it is more about self-interests and not wanting to be inconvenienced. This time the needs of the few have won.”