Details: Known as the “dancing light house,” be sure to visit Ralph Shuler and Ann Hatcher’s West End home this year — as Ralph says it will be his last.
Last year was supposed to be his last, but Ralph says he’s back this year because “there is a new technology that I just couldn’t resist.”
He will be doubling his use of Cosmic Color Ribbons, a new synchronized light technology that can produce up to two million colors and accept up to 100 commands per second.
“They’re driving me nuts,” Ralph says, jokingly. “I could be a brain surgeon better than put these things together.”
But take our word for it — this guy is a brain surgeon when it comes to dancing lights. 8202 Shelley Road is one of our favorite homes on the list.
This West End home will feature about 75,000 lights (down from 250,000 lights in past years) that correspond with music.
This year, there will be 11 songs including “God Rock You Merry Gentlemen” (Ralph’s favorite), “Frosty the Snowman” for the kids, “Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairies” for the more classical and more. The light shows will last about 20 minutes.
At 70-plus, Ralph says his knees can’t take the set-up and maintenance work much longer. After this year, he will put his 250,000 light display up for sale.
Tune to 99.5 FM on your car radio to hear the music that corresponds to the light display.
In years’ past, the backup to see the lights was about 15 minutes the second week before Christmas and over 30 minutes the week just before Christmas.
The Schuler-Hatcher home was featured in Bruce Littlefield’s “Merry Christmas, America! Megawatt Displays Across the U.S.A.”
The house will light up Thanksgiving night, Nov. 28 through New Year’s Eve. Raising money for Central Virginia Food Bank.
Area of town: West End, near Forest and Patterson avenues
Hours: From dark to 11 p.m. Sunday-Thursday; on Friday & Saturday from dark to midnight.