TAMPA, Fla. — It’s a new year but some of us still have our holiday decorations up.
Whether it’s trying to hang on to the holiday season or maybe you just don’t have time to take them down, there could be all sorts of reasons for procrastinating. While others want to take their down the day after Christmas.
So when is the best time to take them down?
“I usually start putting all my lights up in November because it takes me 40 hours to put them all up,” said Jim Arntz, the winner of our 10News Holiday lights competition ‘Light It Up’ initiative. “I usually start slowly taking them down after the New Year.”
Arntz puts up a whopping 30,000 lights, 150 chords and three bubble machines to make his house light up like none other. He’s about half of the way done taking all the decorations down, after three days of work.
“Every year I think I’m crazy to do this but then in May I get the bug to do it all again,” Arntz said.
So, as you start to consider when the right time to remove your decorations are consider this: The City of St Pete is taking down some lights on Friday but will take down the rest on January 6.
The City of Tampa said they’ll pack up their lights on Sunday, January 5, after their classic Winter Village officially closes.
Another rule of thumb, some places will wait until the Twelfth Day of Christmas or the Epiphany, which falls on January 6, this year.
Some local favorites took theirs down already, including Enchant Christmas. But, Holiday Lights in the Gardens at the Florida Botanical Gardens runs through Saturday.
Arntz said overall, his extra holiday decorations costs him an additional $100 on his electric bill, not to mention all the bubbles he buys for the bubble machines on top of that. He said every penny is worth it.
“I enjoy listening to the kids come by and really enjoy the light show. When I was young I loved to look at holiday lights in Ohio and now that I’m retired and have time to do it for others I do. Because Christmas is all about the kids,” Arntz said.
If you’re looking to get rid of your Christmas trees here is some good info on when to do that:
St Pete: You can leave your undecorated tree out for the city to pick up on January 1.
Tampa: You can leave your undecorated tree out any day until January 10 but you need to cut it down to four feet parts and bundle them.
Pasco County: There are multiple tree recycling drop-off locations until January 12.
Hernando County: You can put your tree out on Wednesdays.
Sarasota and Manatee counties: You can put your tree out on days when waste gets regularly collected.
Citrus County: You can recycle their live tree at the landfill for free until January 30.
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