Christmas is coming to Sussex County in a big way. Decorating Delmarva Holiday Festival of Lights has broken ground on the property of Delaware International Speedway and U.S. 13 Dragway in Delmar. The 36-night event, starting in mid-November, features six major sections on a two-mile tour through an animated tour of the North Pole, holiday lights and community-built displays and concludes with a visit to Santa's Village where nightly special events are scheduled.
The show will operate Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday evenings from Thursday, Nov. 15, through Sunday, Dec. 23. On Tuesday, Dec. 25, the event will re-open for 12 consecutive nights until Sunday, Jan. 5. Gates are open 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. on weeknights and 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. on weekends. A New Year's Eve celebration is planned with extended hours to 1 a.m.
The event is hosted by Create 1 Marketing located in Seaford, which is owned by Mark and Denise Cathell.
Area schools, churches, clubs, volunteer fire companies and other nonprofit groups can get involved with the project in several ways, according to Mark Cathell. Groups can sell advanced tickets at $15 per carload with $5 from each sale going back to the selling organization. Groups can compete for $35,000 in cash prizes. There will be a coloring contest for elementary school students; a tree decorating contest for middle school students; and a holiday display contest for high school students and other groups.
“By partnering with these groups and organizations, we feel they will see a tremendous return on the dollar. Create 1 Marketing hopes this event will bring something new and exciting for the area groups to utilize for fund-raising campaigns,” said Mark Cathell. “This will be a local event with resident's involvement showcasing their talents to be seen by thousands of residents of the Eastern Shore.”
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