(Eds. note: Because it’s a private display, it’s not known how long the lights will remain)
WILMINGTON — The Fiore family of Wilmington was featured on ABC TV’s “The Great Christmas Light Fight” a week ago. Although taped in October 2019, the home was entered into competition against other displays across the country for the 2020 competition season.
Charles Fiore, who is 23-years old, enlisted the help of his brother Jonas, 21, and friends from both Wilmington and Tewksbury. Taking several months to build, an experienced crew was needed. Charles had built displays in the past, getting bigger each year.
Judge Taniya Nayak had three other displays across the country to consider. There are four displays on each show to judge and size is not the only factor. Contestants are judged on originality, vintage, size of display, and if synchronized to music. They are also judged on if the ornaments are hand made. Most of all it’s the “wow factor” that has a big part. With around 255,000 lights there is a lot of WOW here.
Vehicles enter the driveway and drive through the display while surrounded by lights on all sides as they approach the main house directly in front of them. The main house is covered from top to bottom in red and green lights.
The buildings on the sides were hand built. The same way you would see them if in a movie. The buildings have only one side. They were designed to look like a town. These buildings are over 25-feet tall and completely covered in lights.
The actual display takes about 30 seconds to drive through. The display is open on weekdays until 9:30 p.m. and weekends until 10 p.m. There is an extremely long line to get in on Concord Street that can stretch past the highway.
Coming from Woburn going north on Rt. 93, take exit 39 toward Concord Street. You want to go left; however, if you see a line of cars, you must go right and get in line behind the last car. As cars are continuously moving through the display there is about a one hour wait from the Rt. 93 ramp.
It is highly suggested that you do not attempt to pass all the cars waiting by using the left lane and trying to cut in to those that are waiting in line. The bumper to bumper traffic makes this difficult and you appear “Grinchlike” if you are let in at all.
This elaborate display is worth the wait and will be the highlight of the season regardless of what faith you belong to. With the COVID isolation taking its toll on all of us, this is a safe way to enjoy the magic of holiday with the family, both young and old.