It's the last day for cars to make their way through the annual Ritzy's Fantasy of Lights display, and the feeling in the air is bittersweet. "They'll be taking down all the beautiful displays on Saturday. It's a mixed feeling thing. You know you've done something fantastic that can't be surpassed in the season. You know that taking down the displays with care and putting them away is going to be able to make everything better next season too," says volunteer Marti Graff.
Even though these lights will soon go out, volunteer Marti Graff knows, the success from this year's display helps Evansville Easter Seals shine bright into the New Year. "They say they are slightly above where we were at this point as of last year when the money had been counted, as of last Friday." The lights will soon go down and families of the Easter Seals lives will shine a little brighter thanks to donations. Still many are sad to see their holiday display go. "I'm over here every day, every single day. I see the carriages go bye every night because i come after dark. I'm a regular. We always walk through here and then we found out later it is like five dollars for us to walk through so we owe them about six-thousand dollars," says park regular Carolyn Hagedorn.
Despite what you might have donated, it's safe to say this year's display was a success. "It always brightens everything up, literally. I couldn't believe how many people came through the walk through. Tons of people singing christmas carols and little kids in those motorized cars. Everybody had a ball." Though the holiday season is nearing an end, a difference was made once again. "As long as Easter Seals is able to provide the therapy and life changing efforts that are needed in the local community, there will always be a positive spirit around anything it's involved with. It doesn't matter the season," says Graff.
All lights will be taken down on Saturday when organizers will announce the final proceeds made from this years display