KENNESAW — If you took all the lights and laid them in a single line, they would run more than 60 miles — enough to run from this festive house in unincorporated Kennesaw to Atlanta and then halfway back.

It’s just one of several remarkable facts about the Joy of Lights installation at this residential home on Ben King Road, which debuted Sunday about a mile from the Kennesaw State University main campus.

The largest residential Christmas light display in Georgia was born in 1988, when Richard Taylor decided to put a “stick tree with big lights out front,” according to That first attempt at spreading holiday cheer didn’t go so well — the wires in all the lights ended up melting — but he kept at it, adding more with each passing year.

This year, work began in August, according to the website, and took about 1,800 hours to complete.

More fun facts: There are more than 9,000 strings of lights and 850 extension cords. It uses enough electricity to power four houses with everything turned on, and yet it is the least expensive component of the display. (Labor comes first, followed by the lights themselves.)

The Phillips family, of Kennesaw, has been coming for years, and now considers it a holiday tradition.

“I love it. I think it’s cool that they let you go right up to their house,” Emma Phillips, a high school senior, said after touring the display Sunday night. “It’s a feeling of community.”

Brandon Irwin also considers it a holiday tradition.

“They like to make other people happy around the holidays, and we just look forward to it,” he said.

Visitors can find the Joy of Lights display at 1510 Ben King Road NW in Kennesaw, from now until Jan. 2 between 6 p.m. and 11 p.m.

Parking is available across the street at the Influencers Church. The display typically draws a large crowd, and drivers are encouraged to exercise caution as they approach.


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