Right as the day begins to fade away, James Gable flips the switch. The neighborhood ignites and the colors of the holidays shine bright.
The neighborhood of 42nd Pl. W. is undoubtedly the best neighborhood in Mountlake Terrace for Christmas and holiday lights.
For nine years now they have decorated the neighborhood and held a food drive to help out those in need. It’s not rare to see a line of cars that goes over to QFC that is full of the people who want to see the decorations.
One of the main reasons they started this tradition of going all out was to help the community.
“We started this because we wanted to help our Mountlake Terrace Food Bank,” resident Konnie Humphrey said.
It all started out when resident James Gable’s daughters received a donation while selling hot chocolate. Some people had given them a few dollars after purchasing a hot beverage.
“So, next year we put out a small box and people would come by and drop money and food,” Gable said.
The tradition of collecting cans and donations has developed into a full-scale operation to help out their neighbors in need. On nights leading up to Christmas, you might spy Santa Claus braving the cold to collect donations.
At first, they had received few canned foods and $100. However, now they have been getting four tons of food and about $18,000. Every penny earned from the food drive is given to the Mountlake Terrace Food Bank.
There isn’t really anyone in charge. It’s simply a community tradition. Almost all of the houses in the neighborhood are decorated with lights and other decorations.
Some of the people that live in Terrace’s top neighborhood are senior citizens and are not able to put up lights.
Robert Humphrey and other residents decorate their houses for them.
“We tried to get 26 houses to concentrate in or as many houses that wanted to put up lights, which we have done pretty good,” Humphrey said.
This neighborhood has recently been crowned number one. For quite a long time, the neighborhood of 228th S.W. was the leader in MLT holiday decorations. However, the real show is now happening at 42nd.
The residents of Terrace’s top neighborhood really like doing this.
“I think it is amazing, I think it gets a lot of people to look at the decorations and gets them to donate to the people in need,” Robert Humphrey’s son Matt said.