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The 25th Holiday Light Show at Rotary Botanical Gardens hits a bullseye

Published: Nov. 25, 2021 at 5:15 PM CST|Updated: Nov. 25, 2021 at 6:05 PM CST
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JANESVILLE, Wis. (WMTV) - The Holiday Light Show at the Janesville Rotary Botanical Gardens is in its 25th year. It begins Friday November 26, but volunteers take months to get the gardens ready.

“Well, I start putting up the decorated trees and bushes August 12. And you know so that’s my life from August 12 until now,” Horticulturist and Light Decorator Larry Holterman said.

Holterman helps set up the arches, the luminaries, the animated and rebar displays, basically anything you see closer to the ground. But if you look up, you will see lights high in the trees, and that’s where volunteer John Janes comes in.

“My specialty is hanging lights with a bow and arrow,” Janes said.

It’s a stringing system Janes has perfected over the last five years. He uses a kid’s 40-pound bow with a 28-inch draw. He rigged it with a fishing reel and a 40-pound test line. He said the most important part is putting a weight on the end of his arrow, so it doesn’t get stuck in the branches.

“The big trick is to estimate the height of the limb that you are going to shoot. And then otherwise you can shoot way beyond and then catch other branches,” Janes said.

Then, a bar with 9 string lights attached is hoisted up into the tree.

The Holiday Light Show is in its 25th year and NBC15 is a proud media sponsor.

Join us tomorrow... for special, live coverage during NBC15 News at 4, 5 and 6. We’ll be there when they turn the lights on.

The show is held at Rotary Botanical Gardens in Janesville. New this year, all tickets must be purchased online. Tickets will not be sold at the gate Holiday Light Show Ticket Prices $10 - Age 13+ $5 - Ages 3-12 Free for Kids 2 and under

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