“It takes about six weeks to set up the display,” said Steve Oemcke, who starts decorating his house at 168 N. Syracuse Ave. in Massapequa for Christmas the second week of October. “I do the inside of the garage and the roof; things people don’t see that much.”
The day after Halloween is when the Oemcke family goes full blown with decorations and lights, including a display that covers almost every inch of their property and is under 24 hour video surveillance.
“I store everything all over my house and I have some friends that help me out as well,” said Oemcke of his winter wonderland when it’s not on display.
Oemcke turns on the lights on Dec. 1 and turns them off on Jan. 1. As a courtesy to his neighbors, Oemcke tries to turn the display off by 10:30 p.m. during the week and 11:30 p.m. on the weekends.
“Probably the last four or five years I have been decorating to this scale, and each year it keeps getting bigger,” said Oemcke of his project. “Next year, we have 12 foot candy canes and mechanical penguins.”
The light display includes everything from penguins, ice skaters and carolers to Santa, snowmen and a reindeer barn next to Santa’s workshop, which is Oemcke’s favorite part. People are welcome to come up to the house and take pictures, enjoying the sights and sounds of Christmas, but are not allowed to touch anything. Visitors are also encouraged to make a donation to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
“St. Jude is one of the few organizations I always donate to and believe in,” said Oemcke. “I always wanted to get to a point where people want to get out of their cars, see the house and donate to help out a great cause.”
The Oemcke’s have been donating the money from their holiday light spectacular to St. Jude for the past three years. Last year, they donated a total of $5,000 worth of checks and cash that was collected from the donation box.
“St. Jude is great. They call us several times and see if we need anything and are always quick to thank us after the donations,” said Oemcke.
If you haven’t seen the amazing Christmas town created by the Oemcke family, grab the kids, stop for some hot chocolate and be prepared to be in awe of the true beauty that comes with the holiday season, courtesy of the Oemcke family.
For more Christmas houses in Masssapequa, click here.