Printer-friendly versionPrinter-friendly version Share this

By Rebecca Jefferis Williamson 

(Photo, left, courtesy of the Starlight Circle Facebook page)

Nov. 13, 2020 (Santee) Santee’s Starlight Circle, a yearly holiday tradition of Christmas lights and decorations, will continue spreading holiday cheer during the pandemic.  Many might find comfort in being able to enjoy this holiday tradition in a social distanced manner – driving Glendon Circle in their cars.

“It’s been a trying year for everyone and hopefully our neighborhood will help brighten things up a bit,” said a 30-year resident of Starlight Circle Jerry Mills. “It seems that viewing from one’s car, rather than on foot, would be the way to go this year.”  

“As far as dealing with COVID-19, we would ask people to follow whatever guidelines are being given by local, state, and national authorities and be respectful of each other,” he said.

Mills noted that it is not an organized event but a “”neighborhood that for decades has decorated and drawn large crowds. So, there are no rules and no one in charge of anything.  It just happens, which is pretty special in itself.” 

Not all holiday traditions will go on as usual, but Mills canvassed other residents who live on the circle located just off North Magnolia on Glendon Circle. 

“A quick survey this morning shows that most people intend to decorate as usual,” said Mills. “I don’t think there will be as many people selling goodies or trinkets because of the issues with the virus.  The folks who sell kettle corn, which is the most popular thing, have their own page.”  See below for link. 

“Being that we are just a neighborhood of holiday-spirited folks, and not an organization of any kind we don’t lay down any sort of rules. We do ask people to be respectful of residents’ yards and decorations, to not leave trash behind and be understanding when the people who live in the circle are trying to get in and out of their own driveways,” he said.

“Many people usually have their decorations up by December 1st and more are up and running after another week or so,” said Mills. “Generally, most people have their lights on from around 5:30 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. Although some start earlier and some stay on later. Again, it is not an organized event and residents are free to do as they choose.” 

Lights stay lit, typically, until Dec. 25 or a few days after.

This holiday tradition can be added back on your holiday calendars even during a pandemic. 


Error message

Local news in the public interest is more important now than ever, during the COVID-19 crisis. Our reporters, as essential workers, are dedicated to keeping you informed, even though we’ve had to cancel fundraising events. Please give the gift of community journalism by donating at