It doesn't take long during a drive through Santa Rosa County to realize Christmas is just around the corner.

Several houses are decorated in the owners holiday finest in anticipation of Chris Kringles round the world flight on Christmas Eve from the North Pole.

While many decorate the inside of their homes, some take it a step further to decorate the outside.

When you do this there are a few things you should keep in mind this holiday season.

"If you seen any wires broken or frayed dispose of them immediately," said Milton Fire Chief John Reble. "Also make sure that you use Universal Labratories (UL) certified lights and extension cords as well as making sure they are outdoor rated."

Reble notes this can be a big problem at times.

"Indoor lights and wires are not water proof," Reble said. "Some are rated as indoor/outdoor, while others are outdoor.

"Another thing you should do is follow the instructions when it comes to the number of lights you string together and try not to overload a circuit by putting them all on one outlet."

The cost of putting your holiday spirit on display is not that expensive anymore.

"LED lights cost a lot less and use a fraction of the electricity as the old standard lights do," said Jeff Rodgers, a media relations specialist with Gulf Power. "LED lights last a lot longer than the standard lights do as well since they are solid state technology compared the older lights with fuses, gases and a filament.

"We will be talking about this more in our next community news letter coming out later this month."

The investment into LED lights is something many of our Facebook followers agree with.

"They hardly burn any energy and I find they are worth the investment," Cindi Williams said.

Mark Cotton broke down the math a little bit if you are wondering how much the lights will add to your power bill for December.

"If you max out your outdoor receptacle circuit and run them four hours a day for 30 days it is still less than $30," Cotton said. "So as long as you are not tripping breakers it won't cost too much."


If you would like to find some houses decorated, our Facebook followers recommended the following locations:


Sowell's North Pole Christmas Lights on Sowell Road outside of Munson

Christmas in Allentown

Putter Lane

Audiss Rd.

Woodbrook Court in Bagdad

Forsyth St. in Bagdad

Back Gate to Whiting Field

Able Lane in Pace

Corner of Penny Lane and South Airport in East Milton

West Spencer Field Rd. near the helicopter field

Twin Oaks off of Berryhill Rd.

Imperal Dr. off of Willard Norris Rd.