Elliston brother and sister to end 31-year holiday tradition

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ELLISTON, Va (WFXR News) – A more than 30-year-old holiday tradition in Montgomery County will soon come to an end. A brother and sister in Elliston have been decorating their neighboring homes with extravagant light displays every year, bringing in hundreds from near and far to see them.

But after lighting up their end of Cove Hollow Road for the past 31 years, they say this is their last year. They are in their 70s and ready for someone else to take the torch.

“Everybody knows Cove Hollow Road,” said Billy Bower who visits each year. “You don’t think it would be anything out here until you get out here.”

He and hundreds of others take the trip to admire the winter wonderland.

“We used to bring our grandkids by here every year and they would be in awe of everything,” said Bower.

Trevor Sprouse says he’s also been bringing his family to look at the lights for years.

“We love it. This is one of the best parts about the holidays is coming to look at the lights,” Sprouse said.

Jerry Parrish and his sister, Lilian Worrel say they’ve loved sharing their passion for Christmas with everyone who comes from near and far to enjoy their display.

“We really enjoy it. The kids really enjoy it more than anything. It’s more for the kids, but we get a lot of grown-ups. I mean a lot, who have been coming for 20 years,” said Parrish.

“They came up here as little kids, but now the kids they bring are bigger than me.”

But now, they say it’s time to hang up their hats.

“I love doing this, but it’s just getting too hard to keep doing it,” said Worrel.

“My sister is getting up in age, and her husband can’t do anything much. And my wife lost both kidneys this year so she can’t help. So it’s just put a lot more on me and I just can’t do it,” said Parrish.

“It’s been a lot of fun over the years. A lot of fun. But like I say, it’s getting to be a chore now because we’re all getting up in age. It’s getting hard getting on the roofs, putting lights on the roofs of both houses and stuff.”

Yearly visitors say they will miss this display.

“Sad. Very sad. I wonder kind of what they’re going to do with everything after it’s all said and done,” said Sprouse.

Jerry says they plan to sell their decorations and lights hopefully to someone who might continue their tradition.

“Well let somebody else, 30 to 15 years younger, 20 years younger and we’ll go look at theirs cause we still like the lights.”

Over the years, Jerry and Lilian say their neighbors have stepped up their decorations and they hope it continues even after they stop.

If you would like to see all of these lights and more in person – and maybe even catch Santa Claus! – they will be up and lit from now until the week of Christmas from about 5:30 to 9 every night.

The best times to see Santa out in the lights is on weekend nights during those times!

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