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Published December 11 2012

Vote today: Griswold nominees showcase area holiday decorations

FARGO – Christmas lights, those simple strands of bulbs that have become such an important part of our holiday traditions, date all the way back to 1880, according to the Library of Congress.

It was during that year’s Christmas season that renowned inventor Thomas Edison created the very first strand of electric lights, which were put up outside his laboratory in Menlo Park.

The lights have come a long way since then, adorning our trees and houses in the weeks leading up to Christmas.

More than that, the lights can also be a source of pride and competition. That’s how it is for the eight nominees of this year’s Griswold Award, which showcases the overindulgence of Christmas lights and decorations in the same way as Chevy Chase’s iconic character, Clark Griswold, in “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation.”

Voting for the 10th – and final – award kicks off today online on this viewing and voting page. Finalists, nominated by friends, family or neighbors who appreciate the time and hard work that goes into such displays, offer some of the best decorations in Fargo-Moorhead.

Leading the pack of nominees is two-time reigning award winner Troy Gilbertson, whose home at 2602 Spruce Lane in Moorhead is again covered completely in string lights, with a group of reindeer taking off from the middle of his front yard.

But Gilbertson faces plenty of tough competition this year. From houses intricately decorated with multi-colored lights to inflatable, lighted Christmas figures helping to brighten up lawns, each home has their own chance to shine.

And though each respective nominee may have something going for it, it’s up to you to decide which one is the best.

We’ve included a list of addresses and a map of the finalists, (which this year are found only in Fargo and Moorhead) if you want to drive around and check them out for yourself.

If you would prefer to view the nominees from the comfort of your own home instead, we have short videos of each display online at www.inforum.com.

Take a look and be sure to support your favorite. Voting will be active through Tuesday, so be sure to cast your vote soon.

Then check The Forum the day after Christmas for a profile on the winning homeowner who this year made both Thomas Edison and Clark Griswold proud.

THIS YEAR’S GRISWOLD NOMINEES

• 2602 Spruce Lane, Moorhead

• 1804 12th St. S., Moorhead

• 4502 Timberline Dr., Fargo

• 3321 Washington St., Fargo

• 3320 28th Ave. S., Fargo

• 5300 9th St. N., Fargo

• 1731 5th St. S., Fargo

• 77 29th Ave. N., Fargo


Readers can reach Forum reporter Sam Benshoof at (701) 241-5535