Christmas lights, a family tradition
Who knew you could get to Natchitoches from Pineville in about five minutes? Well, almost.
A short drive along Highway 28 East will bring you to the Libuse community that houses a Christmas light display that’s proudly known by the locals as “Little Natchitoches.”
Home-made light displays blending traditional and LED lights adorn the edges of a large pond at the front of the Lott family property. The display takes about three months to finish each year and officially turns on the holidays, and turns up their utility bill, Thanksgiving day.
“To me Christmas ornaments are memories,” said Ellis Lott recounting the stories of how he’s acquired some of his lawn decorations. Some have come broken from family friends waiting to be fixed up and made into a new display in “Little Natchitoches.”
While Ellis makes his decorations by hand, his wife Kay makes the magic by programming their lights to music broadcast on a low-power frequency from their roof.
When asked what songs make the show, her answer was simple... “I have to like them,” she joked. After all, each song takes about four hours to program.
On cold December nights, the couple will sit out around a fire pit and enjoy their work. While families come to look at the lights, they sit by and watch the headlights.
“We sit out and listen. You can hear them singing along to the songs in the show,” said Ellis Lott. “That’s just fantastic.”
And it’s been fantastic for generations.
Kay’s parents, Pat and Shelby Nugent, were the original decorators. They lived in the house next door and would sit out too, amazed by their amount of visitors eager to see the show.
“I would get calls every night,” remarked Kay Lott. “Do you see how many are out here?”
As of last year, just before Christmas, both Pat and Shelby have passed on, leaving their lights behind, burning brighter than ever. And, they look great from up above.
Interested in visiting the display? They’re located on 133 Azalea Avenue, Pineville LA near Skateville. Turn left just before the Dollar General and… Look for the lights.