Red Deerians enjoy the colourful holiday spectacle in Red Deer City Hall Park. (Photo by LANA MICHELIN/Advocate staff)

Red Deerians enjoy the colourful holiday spectacle in Red Deer City Hall Park. (Photo by LANA MICHELIN/Advocate staff)

Red Deer’s Christmas Lights tour is back — bigger than ever

Jim and A.J. Elliott unveil the best Christmas light tours for 2021

Much of the holiday magic is reflected in the lighted-up streets and yards of our city.

For several weeks in late November, Jim Elliott and his son A.J. cruise through each Red Deer neighbourhood to see the Christmas light displays. The father and son then painstakingly map them out, so that others can enjoy the glittering views.

Local routes have grown considerably since the senior Elliott started the Christmas Light mapping project 18 years ago. At that time, Jim was arranging bus tours of the seasonal spectacles for children with disabilities and their parents. He later continued guiding around clients of the Central Alberta Women’s Emergency Shelter.

But while Elliott stopped renting buses for his own tours, he and A.J. have continued to update and expand their maps of light-decked streets so Red Deer-area residents can take their own self-guided tours.

“I wanted to do something special for others,” stated Jim, a retired former City of Red Deer employee.

Newer neighbourhoods such as Inglewood, Vanier Woods and Lancaster have been added since 2018. Now the complete light tour would be so exhaustive that the Elliotts divided it into seven routes, which can each be easily driven in an evening.

A.J. also complied a highlights listing, spotlighting the most festooned streets in each neighbourhood.

The brightest attractions tend to be in the heart of the downtown and in more established residential areas. High on any list of favourites are City Hall Park and Ohio Close in Oriole Park, where most homes have adopted the holiday glow.

Others include a cottage-like home bathed in white sparkly lights across from Mountview Drugs, and character-festooned houses on Barrett and Cornett Drives that attract dozens of kids of all ages every holiday season.

This year, the Capstone area between Carnival Cinemas and the Red Deer River is also decorated for the season.

Each year, the Elliotts also discover new surprises as more people are drawn into the decorating spirit and perennial displays get expanded and enhanced. “It’s just beautiful,” Jim has stated. “You can’t believe it…”

Highlights of the 2021 Red Deer Christmas Light Tour:

Downtown: City Hall Park. Johnstone: Jade Pl, Jones Cr, Jordan Pkwy, Jaspar Cr, Jenner Cr. Kentwood: Kilburn Crescent, Kendrew Drive, Kirkland Drive, Kentwood Drive. Glendale: Grote Crescent, Glendale Boulevard, Gunn Street, 71 Street. Normandeau: Nyberg Ave, Nance Ave, Noble Ave, 76 St, Nordegg Cr, Norton Ave. Pines: Pamely Avenue. Garden Heights: Garrison Circle. Riverside Meadows: 60 Street, 60 Avenue. Highland Green: Hill Crescent, Halladay Avenue, 66 Street Close, 63 Street, Humber Close. Oriole Park: Odell Gn, Oates Gn, Orr Drive, Oswald Cr, Orwell Cl, Oleander Dr, Ohio Cl, Otterbury Ave, Oxbow St, Oakley Cl. Fairview: Fern Road, Freemont Crescent, Fairway Avenue. West Park: Wells Street, Wilkins Green, Wilson Crescent, Welton Crescent, 35 Street, 36 Street. Bower: Baines Crescent, Baird Street, Barrett Drive (east and south). Sunnybrook: Spencer Street, Sherwood Crescent (Corner), Stirling Close. Mountview: Spruce Drive, 45 Avenue, 43 Avenue (south end and pharmacy). Morrisroe: McConnell Close, Munro Crescent, Moseley Close, McFarlane Street. Grandview: 47 Street, 41 Avenue, 42 Avenue. Michener: Michener Green, 38A Avenue. Waskasoo: 53 Street. Anders: Allan St, Anders St, Anquetel St, Ansett Cr, Arb Cl, Alton Cl, Assinger Ave. Inglewood: Illingworth Crescent, Inglewood Drive. Vanier Woods: Vanier Drive. Lancaster: Logan Close, Lamont Close, Lister Crescent, Lazaro Close. Deer Park: Dixon Cr, Dunning Cr, Deschner Cl, Dynes St, Dodge Ave, Doran Cr, Dickenson Cr. Eastview: Edgington Cl, 35A Ave, Edwards Cr, Excell St, Eline St, Elwell Ave, Elliot Cr, Ellenwood Dr, Everitt Cr, Terrace Pk. Clearview: Crawford Street, Castle Crescent, Connaught Crescent, Cornett Drive, Chappell Drive. Rosedale: Russell Crescent, Ramsay Avenue, Robinson Crescent, Rutherford Drive. Timberlands: Tanner Street, Truant Crescent. Red Deer County: Range Road: 38254 Range Road 265. Parkland Gardens: Off Highway 11, left side Parkland Garden Center and Ice Sculptures.

Here are the links to the Google MyMaps for the seven individual routes:

Route A:

google.com/maps/d/edit?mid=1E_BY4eJamd7a6HeiSzIOAyMkNjxsxUIl&usp=sharing

Route B:

google.com/maps/d/edit?mid=1x3gfGy4mDDbFbsiMZosq_JDg5f7rIb2I&usp=sharing

Route C:

google.com/maps/d/edit?mid=1lqu8F3KhYGmJJU5Z8jL8TYrBV_P3R_eN&usp=sharing

Route D:

google.com/maps/d/edit?mid=1IOV72Gkk8AcuCrrZufF5G3eauYWw8Sik&usp=sharing

Route E:

google.com/maps/d/edit?mid=1gPGwbeO0014648CfuYsiVB4WdWZ27gDQ&usp=sharing

Route F:

google.com/maps/d/edit?mid=1ieeo9doc28bxlITqNyD0wPcqyfPKoW2C&usp=sharing

Route G:

google.com/maps/d/edit?mid=1KIshrrWI4T6TvgD0V40aLXAlWrVSQA_Z&usp=sharing

red deer city

 

Every year, the light display in Red Deer’s City Hall Park attracts hundreds of families. (Photo by LANA MICHELIN/Advocate staff)

Every year, the light display in Red Deer’s City Hall Park attracts hundreds of families. (Photo by LANA MICHELIN/Advocate staff)

A bird’s-eye view of the spectacular light displays in Red Deer’s City Hall Park. (Contributed photo by Tourism Red Deer)

A bird’s-eye view of the spectacular light displays in Red Deer’s City Hall Park. (Contributed photo by Tourism Red Deer)