For the third year, Redfin real estate has made their picks. They asked their real estate agents, who they say are the ultimate neighborhood experts because they constantly driving around to take clients on home tours or attend open houses, and living in the community. Based on their agents’ responses, they compiled a list of the five best neighborhoods to see holiday lights in the nation and in 34 metropolitan areas around the U.S. For the most part, these are old-fashioned home displays that don’t cost a thing, making a trip out to see them a budget-friendly holiday activity for friends and families.
Here are the top five neighborhoods in the U.S. for 2014:
1. Dyker Heights – Brooklyn, NY
2. “Christmas Town” – McAdenville, NC
3. Interlochen – Arlington, TX
4. “Miracle on 34th Street” – Baltimore, MD
5. Peacock Lane – Portland, OR
They also have best neighborhoods in certain metropolitan areas. Below are my personal favorite areas. I’m an East Coast/Mid-Atlantic kind of geek girl.
Hampden: Now in its 67th year, The Miracle on 34th Street is a Baltimore tradition that is visited by thousands each year. The neighbors who live on the 700 block of 34th Street between Chestnut and Keswick Road have been decorating their homes and yards with holiday lights and displays for decades. With a hubcap Christmas tree and big lighted crab, Christmas Street does holiday decorating with Hampden flair! Although it almost didn’t happen this year. The neighborhood thought that they needed more police presence to stem an upsurge in crime.
Federal Hill: A number of residents participate in the Federal Hill Holiday Decorating Contest, with awards going to both the classiest and tackiest of displays.
Columbia: A visit to the home of Chuck Daniels in the Beaverbrook neighborhood at 5034 Durham Road East has been a tradition for many Columbia families for years. Daniels told the Baltimore Sun that this may be the last year for his display and it will be his grandest yet.
Dundalk: While it’s tough to compete with the famous 34th Street holiday lights, lots of homeowners in Dundalk decorate their homes with festive displays.
Other: There are several well-known Griswold homes in the greater Baltimore area, including the home of Mr. Christmas at 22 Kitzbuhel Road in Parkton, Mamulaville off Ringe Drive and Burns Crossing in Severn, the Yaglenski’s Dancing Holiday Lights Spectacular at 9056 Clendenin Way in Frederick and Lights On Ice Crystal in Odenton.
South Philly: The Miracle on South 13th Street returns with its elaborate displays of lights, inflatable characters, decorations and more. This year, activities at the 1600 block of South 13th Street include a holiday run on December 11 and a holiday lights bike tour on December 18.
Smedley: Coined The Christmas Street by its residents, the Smedley Street Christmas Light Spectacular is on the 2700 Block of Smedley Street.
Ambler: Located at 1320 East Butler Pike, this annual holiday light extravaganza is a rainbow of colors that wink and blink into the night. Also, there are weekly visits from Santa and Elsa to help spread the holiday cheer.
Levittown: The suburb of Levittown has many crowd-drawing homes including the home of Neil J. DiSpirito, located at 1 White Spruce Ln, and Stonybrook Lights at 56 Stonybrook Drive.
Warminster Township: Several homes have bright displays in Warminster, including those at 801 County Line Road, 901 Catalpa Road, 1168 Oak Leaf Lane, and 43 Spencer Lane. More information is available via the Bucks County Courier Times.
Washington, D.C., Area
Woodbridge & Dale City, Virginia: Residents of the Woodbridge/Dale City area have a lot of cheer and don’t shy away from high electricity bills. The Jeager family Christmas display on Reagon Court in Dale City is synchronized to music. The Johnston Christmas Wonderland is a spectacular display at the intersection of Evansdale and Edgewater. Don’t miss the Brittle family display at 14311 Fairview Lane in Dale City or the Andersons’ North Pole display at 15615 Bushey Drive off Cardinal Drive in Woodbridge. Continue your tour up the road to Lake Ridge, where you can find Lake Ridge Lights on Stone Lined Circle and a bright home display on the Corner of Smoketown Road and Cavalier Drive.
Alexandria, Virginia: An evening stroll through Old Town Alexandria will offer plenty of holiday cheer as many residents and local businesses decorate for the holidays. Must-see residential displays include Collingwood Lights at 1601 Collingwood Road, and the homes at 2507 Fairview Drive, 6634 South Kings Highway and 6412 Joyce Road.
Fairfax, Virginia: There are quite a few Griswolds in Fairfax. Must-see homes include 3308 Prosperity Avenue, 3522 Chain Bridge Road, 9804 Kirktree Court, 9806 Sharon Court and on Karen Drive off of Barkley. Photos are available on fairfaxchristmaslights.com.
Silver Spring, Maryland: Spectacular homes in the area include 15428 Baileys Ln and 12710 Laurie Dr. Just over the border of Maryland in the upper corner of DC, The Bishop’s House at 1665 N. Portal Dr. NW is reportedly covered in over 500,000 lights and timed to music.
Garrett Park, Maryland: Each year, the Garrett Park Women’s Club sponsors a holiday decorating contest resulting in a brightly lit and festive neighborhood.