Holiday Decoration Ideas That Could Win Contests

holidaydecorationsEvery year, there’s always that one homeowner in town who goes above and beyond the call of the holiday spirit, and decks their property out with thousands upon thousands of Christmas lights, elaborate dioramas, and monolithic statues and signs. This year, Jacksonville, North Carolina is even encouraging folks to do so.

The City of Jacksonville’s Holiday Home Decorating Contest is now accepting entries for the Thanksgiving and Christmas portions of the competition, which gives North Carolinians great incentive to bring extra aesthetic appeal to their neighborhoods. Since some residents already go overboard with the holiday cheer, the contest gives them a chance to be recognized for their efforts.

“It’s just an effort to have people show their community pride,” said Grace Haubrich, a member of the Jacksonville Environmental and Appearance Advisory Committee. “We thought that this might be a way for them to show off their home and say to the rest of the city ‘hey, look at us.'”

According to contest’s official web page, “All winners will receive a special yard sign, a commemorative award, and be recognized at a City Council meeting.”

In order to win, homeowners will have to not only put in a lot of work, but also get particularly creative.

One particular decoration design oft referred to as “the hanging man,” is sure to make passersby do double takes, and give them a chuckle. Instead of laboriously stringing their Christmas lights all around the gutters of their home, some homeowners will hang a portion, and let the rest fall. Where the string is down, homeowners will also lay down a fence, and put a dummy up, hanging from the gutters, to make it look like they’ve tripped while hanging up the lights.

Another great idea, which may not win the contest but could win a few laughs, is to simply piggy back off of an enthusiastic neighbor’s design. Any house next to a grand Christmas display could simply hang lights to spell out the word “ditto,” because after all, decorating is hard.

“I haven’t thought of holiday decorating being any more difficult whether interior or exterior,” says Scott Tucker, Owner of “It usually comes down to the spirit it’s done within. That being said, a nautical theme holiday may present it’s own unique challenge, in that we don’t have much to draw from historically. Start by winding a bunch of lights around an extension cord, hose, or length of rope to form an anchor, lighthouse or sailing ship.”

Is home decorating all that difficult? Is interior decorating easier than exterior decorating? Is this true even around the holiday times? Do you have any tips or suggestions for people looking to decorate their homes this holiday with a more nautical theme?

Whether or not there’s a holiday contest, and whether or not decorating is tricky, it still feels good to get out and make a display. After all, you get out of the holidays what you put into them.