Holiday lights shine bright at the Pfeiffer home at 17...

Holiday lights shine bright at the Pfeiffer home at 17 Rimlet Dr. in Commack on Dec. 5, 2014. Credit: Johnny Milano

The shopping list of items for illuminating a dazzling holiday light display is extensive. To match some of the ones featured here, you'll need:

> 15,000-50,000 (or more) lights

> 200-plus blow molds

> Nonedible candy canes at least 8 feet tall

> Several dozen edible candy canes for visitors

> 300 feet (or more) of cable

> Time — from several days to several weeks for setup

If you're like first-time homeowner and Ronkonkoma resident Peter Tomasello, you'll also need to pencil in 100 yard sales.

Decorating for the holidays is not new for Tomasello — for years he decked his parents' Ronkonkoma house in lights before they sold it. Afterward there was no place to store the decorations, so Tomasello said they donated about 300 items to a camp in Center Moriches.

When shopping for a home, he had a unique must-have.

"I specifically wanted something that looked like a gingerbread house," Tomasello said.

The house's brown exterior and white gutters helped seal the deal, and the lawn of his real-life gingerbread house is covered with dozens of blow-mold figurines — from toy soldiers to Santa Claus to snowmen and a choir in song. Most items came from Craigslist and yard sales.

Up in the sky, visitors won't see Superman, but they'll still be amazed. When Tomasello went shopping this past summer for decorations, he found one of the most striking features in his display and the first decoration to go up — Santa in his sleigh, being pulled by a single line of nine reindeer. They appear to fly in the sky but are actually suspended on cables attached to a tree and the peak of the house.

"It's sort of a dream come true having my own display," Tomasello said. "I can bring the happiness I brought to my parents' house to my own, and I plan to do it for many years to come."

In Valley Stream, Nicholas Angioletti remains on light duty at his parents' home. Every year he joins his father and a close family friend to erect the display. This is where you'll see the pair of 8-foot-tall candy canes, plus the Three Stooges, a 5-foot-tall wreath and more than 15,000 LED and energy-efficient bulbs. The home's location provides an eyeful of decorations from two intersecting streets.

"The corner location helps a lot," Angioletti said. "It's a lucky coincidence."

In most every other aspect, everything related to a holiday display is intentional — and labor intensive. At the Probst home in Massapequa Park, a pear tree encased in sapphire blue lights is the beacon for a bright display that draws neighbors and other Long Islanders. Pat Probst uses a lift to string the lights, starting at the top of the tree, according to his wife, Laura. If all goes well — son John, 15, is responsible for fixing any glitches with bulbs — he gets the job done in about four to five hours with the help of a friend on the ground.

"Everybody loves the blue tree," Laura Probst said.

Visitors can enjoy the lights and take pictures in front of the display through Jan. 2, but on Dec. 22, from 7 to 9 p.m., they can donate to the Cancer Center for Kids at Winthrop-University Hospital in Mineola while sipping on hot chocolate, enjoying candy canes and listening to live holiday music courtesy of Danielle Probst, 17, and some friends from Massapequa High School. If Mother Nature doesn't cooperate, the rain date is Dec. 28.

No matter what the weather holds, in LI Life today and next Sunday, Dec. 21, you can see the best of the holiday light displays submitted to Newsday.

We hope you enjoy the bright and bountiful lights of the season, and we thank those responsible for the beautiful glow.

Tracy M. Brown,
LI Life editor


Newsday chooses homes for the Holiday Lights edition based on nominations from homeowners or their friends, relatives and neighbors.

The deadline for 2015 submissions is Dec. 1, 2015.

Some steps to help you get ready:

1. When filing your entry, include photos of your 2015 display. Entries of previous displays will not be considered. Newsday begins asking for nominations in October.

2. As next year's holiday season approaches, watch for the Holiday Lights coupon and the LILife reminder for more details about nominations of decorated houses.

3. Homes with light displays featured in LI Life in the past three years are not eligible for submission but can be included in a listing of displays to visit across Long Island.


Load up the car and take a spin around Long Island to see other homes illuminated for the season, including some on this list that were nominated for the Holiday Lights issue. Some have synchronized light displays and donation boxes for a worthy cause.


958 Adams St., the Frisch family (collecting donations for the Animal Cancer Foundation)


2323 Centre Ave., the Prainito family

325 St. Marks Ave., the Romeo family (display is synchronized to music)


178 North Fifth St., the Granata family (display is synchronized to music)

74 Broadway, the Henn family


3 Malibu Lane, the Fabris family (collecting donations for Stony Brook Children's Hospital)

3 Irene Court, the Terzakos family


11 Loretta Court, the Brown family

5 Forest Lane, the Fleming family

3 Albright Rd., the Williams family

Deer Park

247 W. 20th St., the Catanzaro family

East Meadow

2013 North Jerusalem Rd., the Bivona family


1360 Clay St., the Buturla family


5 Pinehurst Rd., the Mazzella family

Franklin Square

232 Kalb Ave., the Cullen family

991 Second Ave., the DiRe family

Garden City

4 Lincoln St., the Schlatter family

Garden City Park

58 2nd St., the Skrobe family


47 Primrose Ave., the Gluck family

21 9th St., the Taggart family


61 Flaxwood Dr., the Wright family

Huntington Station

21 Kivy St., the Baade family

13 Weston St., the Kielawa family


6 Walden Ave., the Chazotte family (collecting donations for St. Jude Children's Research Hospital)

Kings Park

8 Colby Dr., the Esposito family


117 Schoolhouse Rd., the Aquilina family

509 Parker Ave., the Smith family


48 Club Lane, the Stevens family


240 S. Third St., the Vezzi family


205 Rocklyn Ave., the Albert family

55 Winthrop St., the Amico family


4 Wagg Ave., the Armstrong family


20 Bruce Dr., the Breimann family


44 Ohio Ave., the Testa family

Massapequa Park

144 Koehl St., the Enderley family

12 Pompano Lane, the Icart family

309 Philadelphia Ave., the Scarpias family


1737 Ann Rd., the Prestia family


5 Laura Court, the Forbes family

North Babylon

44 Deer Lake Dr., the White family

North Bellmore

1369 Dewey Ave., the Whittaker family

1370 Dewey Ave., the Lossel family

North Massapequa

544 North Oak St., the Cerra family

North Merrick

1038 West Dr., the Presti family


144 Weidner Ave., the Sitzman family (display is synchronized to music)


33 Jamaica Ave., the Spagnuolo family

Port Jefferson Station

6 Erie St., the Ryder family


8A Fifth St., the Curto family

St. James

3 Sergent Court, the Marciante family


203 Johnson Ave., the Theofield family (collecting items for the Sayville food pantry)


745 Arlington Dr., the Dabbraccio family

Sea Cliff

85 8th Ave., the Brigis family


8 Highview Ave., the Chiofalo family

52 King Ave., the Marrocco family (collecting for the Make-A-Wish Foundation; St. Jude Children's Research Hospital; and the Stay Strong Andrew Foundation)


69 Baybright Dr. W., the Hassler family


23 Northumberland Dr., the Ferrara family


2845 Charles Rd., the Breeze family

West Babylon

175 Marcy St., the Mauser family (collecting for a hospital)

1101 Herzel Blvd., the Osman family

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