SHARE THE SPIRIT: Lit with Christmas cheer

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Family in the spirit to light up sick children’s lives

- Janek Speight, December 3

THE Sawyer family has been spreading Christmas cheer at their Cardiff home for 17 years, and this year they’ve stepped up their game.

Glenn Sawyer and his wife, Leesa, have gradually expanded their lights display every year, and from humble beginnings the house has blossomed into an extravagant show.

This Christmas the display includes a snow machine, laser lights and a  four-metre tree that sits atop the Sawyers’ roof.

‘‘It started out with just two boxes of lights and then just kept growing,’’ Mr Sawyer said.

‘‘This year we’re fully computerised with about 200 channels controlling it all, so it’s quite a bit bigger.’’

The light show isn’t just for fun:  the family is raising funds for the Starlight Foundation this year.

Mr Sawyer said the family chose to support the organisation to bring smiles to sick children’s faces.

‘‘I’ve seen the kids up there,’’ he said.

‘‘They come out with two buses of kids during Christmas and just to see their faces light up is great.’’

Building the display is a huge job, but luckily Mr Sawyer has three daughters to give him a hand: Shannon, 14, Kaitlin, 12, and Erin, 4. 

The lights will shine at 36 Lowry Street every night  up to Christmas until 11pm.

Brothers' sensational display in Lambton North

- Janek Speight, December 1

CHRISTMAS celebrations are well under way at Lambton North.

Brothers Peter and Aaren Bower have put together a display of more than 20,000 lights, 48 channels of computer-controlled animation, a snow machine, inflatable figures and music.

They flicked the switch at 99 Acacia Avenue last night and will have it on every night up to Christmas.

While Aaren and his wife Mel have been decorating their house and raising funds for charity for the past five years, this Christmas has extra significance.

The Bower family was rocked when their father was diagnosed with terminal cancer last year and the brothers decided this Christmas all proceeds would go to the Cancer Council NSW.

"We've had a lot of support from the community and it's something close to our hearts and we really want to make it work," Aaren Bower said.

They are hoping visitors will donate and have set-up a website and Facebook page, Christmas on Acacia.

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