Christmas lights contest keeps town merry and bright

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  • Photo Provided Folks will be lighting up their homes in West Milford for a chance at winning $500 in a contest sponsored by the Highlands Economic Development and Tourism Corp.

  • Photo Provided One of the winning entries in last year's holiday lighting contest.

The Season of Lights may be especially bright for some local folks this year.

A $500 grand prize is offered in the fourth annual Christmas Lighting Contest sponsored by the West Milford-based Highlands Economic Development and Tourism Corp. (HEAT). The contest is open to all township residents and businesses.

Tim Wagner, HEAT chairman, said the purpose of the event is “to bring the community together while adding to the beauty of the township during the holiday season.”

Entry is simple: contestants decorate their local home or business and submit a photo of the light display to

Competing photos will be displayed on HEAT’s Facebook page, where viewers can “like” each photo. The photo with the most likes will win $500 cash prize.

Submissions must be received by Dec. 19. Voting will continue until Dec. 31. The winner will be announced in early January.

During the Christmas season over the past several years, HEAT has spearheaded efforts to light up the township’s downtown area, stressing the theme of Unity for the community.

HEAT is a 501(c)3 corporation with the stated goal of creating a better lifestyle for local residents, through charitable activities, such as the Christmas Lighting Contest, support of Project Graduation at the township high school, support of the American Legion, a sponsor for Bubbling Springs Day camp and the Kelly Miller Circus.

For more information on HEAT or becoming a member, contact Wagner at, or visit the HEAT website at

For regular updates on HEAT activities, “like” the HEAT Facebook page

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