West Hartford Christmas Light Display Supports St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital

Holiday display at 22 Westgate Street, West Hartford. Courtesy of Joe Ward

A West Hartford residence is decked out with an elaborate light display that is a fundraiser for St. Jude Children’s Hospital.

Holiday display at 22 Westgate Street, West Hartford. Courtesy of Joe Ward

By Ronni Newton

West Hartford residents have created the WeHa Wonderland  fundraiser – using lights and holiday decorations to help bring light and support to children and their families who are dealing with cancer and seeking treatment at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee.

“We host an elaborate light display in our backyard of new and old decor, which we allow neighbors and the community to walk through,” shared Joe Ward, a resident of 22 Westgate Street in the Elmwood section of West Hartford. Donations are encouraged by those coming to view the display, with 100% of the proceeds going to support St. Jude.

“Thanks to you donors like you, no family ever receives a bill from St. Jude for treatment, travel, housing or food – because all a family should worry about is helping their child live,” states the fundraising page for WeHa Wonderland. As of Dec. 26, $2,351 of the $5,000 goal has been met.

The display has been in place since the beginning of December, and is open for viewing on Friday and Saturday from 5-9 p.m. and Sunday from 5 to 8 p.m., through Dec. 31.

There’s a Facebook page for the fundraiser, which provides the story behind some of the items on display, which include former municipal decorations.

“Tara Angel once graced the streets of Syracuse, NY. Refurbished in Indiana and sold to a collector in South Carolina. That’s where I picked her up with a cargo van,” states the Facebook post. Tara Angel is 15 feet high, and when you find her on Westgate Street, you know you’re at the right house.

You’ll find the Grinch and his dog Max, Olaf, lots of snowmen, and much more. There are other items salvaged from municipal holiday decor mixed in with some new decorations.

Holiday display at 22 Westgate Street, West Hartford. Courtesy of Joe Ward

“Treatments invented at St. Jude have helped push the overall childhood cancer survival rate from 20% to more than 80% since it opened more than 50 years ago,” states the fundraising page. “Join me! Together we can help St. Jude change the world.”

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