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Colleton drive-through holiday display turns 20 this year

A Colleton County Christmas staple is celebrating its 20th anniversary this holiday season.
The handmade holiday light display in Ruffin is now in its 20th year. It was created two decades ago by Colleton County business owners and couple Pat and David Garris.
The two would work year-round to create the displays and would begin setting up the actual lighting experience after July of each year.
This year, the light display is featuring all of the classic staples and several new displays, created as original artwork by David Garris. Garris began creating his original artwork displays in 1999 as a way to use his love for metal-making to create holiday displays for his family. His original pieces were mostly holiday-themed and were placed carefully along the acreage on his Ruffin property. Each piece is something that David created in his thought processes, and each one was welded together by hand.
Since then, he has created new displays over the years, adding to his original creations.
In all, there are approximately 2,000 pieces of handmade holiday lighting displays in the Ruffin community display.
Newer pieces include the likeness of Mickey Mouse and Tinker Bell, two Disney characters.
“My favorite piece of all is the Garris Logging truck,” said Victoria Garris, granddaughter to David and Pat. Victoria was a child when her grandparents began their now annual Christmas tradition. She would run her hot chocolate station to passers-by and to those who wanted to walk through the display. Her grandparents own Garris Logging, a business located a few miles outside of Williams.
Now a mother, Victoria says she is thrilled that her family’s holiday tradition will be a part of her own children’s holiday memories.
“We turned them on Thanksgiving night,” she said, of the lights. “I’m proud of my grandparents for doing this.”
The lights are located on the Garris’ property, at 2094 Garris Avenue in Ruffin. The holiday display is now on for the public’s viewing, and it will stay lit each night, Thursday through Sunday, from now through December 31st on New Year’s Eve.
During the holiday break with the Colleton County School District, the Garris’ will keep the lights turned on nightly, seven days a week.
The lights are turned on at dusk and are turned off at 10 p.m. This is a free drive-through display.

Heather Walters (1626 Posts)