For 27 years, Neil Salmond has decorated his 4091 Tuxedo Dr. house, yard and driveway with the city’s most elaborate display of lights, ornaments and decorations. The lights are on from 5:30 p.m. to midnight through the holidays. Travis Paterson/News Staff

Saanich’s famous Tuxedo Drive Christmas display for sale

Last year for famous Tuxedo Drive Christmas display, unless you want to buy it

On New Year’s Day, when Neil and Michelle Salmond turn off the power for their hugely popular Tuxedo Christmas lights display, it will be for the last time.

The famous light and decoration setup, with inflatables over 30 feet high, has been a Saanich institution for 28 years. It starts again on Friday (Dec. 8), and will run nightly from 5:30 to 11 p.m. through Jan. 1 at 4091 Tuxedo Dr.

Then it’s lights out.

“It’s going to be our last year, this has been a pretty big thing for us,” said Neil Salmond. “I’ve had a few injuries, an MCL tear this year, and I can’t go up the ladder anymore.”

The display features hundreds of props, a 1956 firetruck, a series of 25-foot inflatables, animatronic animals, and boasts many recognizable characters from Christmas and pop culture in general.

For fans who make the annual trek to Tuxedo, coming from as far as the Cowichan Valley, there is hope the display will continue. The Salmonds hope to move the collection on to a taker, and are open to offers.

It’s hard to put a price on the collection, but Salmond said it doesn’t matter, it’s going to be a good deal.

The pack of reindeer flying across the Salmonds’ front yard came to them used, but cost $22,000 at one point. The bigger inflatables (about 25 feet tall) all cost well into the thousands, and there’s several of them – an elf, snowman, nutcracker, candle, etc.

“It’s too much to figure out,” Salmond said. “We’re not trying to get a ton of money for it. We would like to move it, we have so much we can’t even put it all up.”

This week Western One rentals lent a 45-foot power lift to aid the Salmonds in their set up, as they do every year.

“We’re very thankful to Western One, and to all the community,” Salmond said. “It’s been fun, some people have been coming by so long, a third generation of children are coming now. We’ve been glad to do it for the community.”

It started when the Salmond children were young. Neil has been involved in stage sets and had the rights to distribute giant inflatables for the South Island, which led him to acquire inflatable Christmas characters for the display. Salmond calls Michelle the creative source in all of it.

“I have a corny sense of humour, so does my wife, it will be sad for us,” Salmond said. “We’re energized [to do it once more] but sad at the same time, [years of] nice thoughts and people dropping cards and gifts off has been quite nice.”

The collection fills both the Salmonds’ garage and part of his company warehouse.

Through the years there’s been some ups and downs. Oak branches have fallen on the display, while big windstorms have also made a mess of it. It’s hard to estimate but Salmond figures 15,000 to 25,000 people come by annually to see the display.

“I don’t actually count the visitors but it’s two weeks solid of tires rolling by,” Salmond said.

“I feel so sad about the whole thing. Everyone says I’ve been saying this for years, that it would be the last year and no one believed me, but this is the last year.”

reporter@saanichnews.com

Just Posted

Prank pizzas delivered to Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps’ campaign celebration

The fake orders happened throughout Helps’ campaign

VIDEO: Tent city moves to Woodwynn Farm, arrests made

The group is asking the government to provide housing for 60 tent city members

Cougar spotted Saturday morning in Saanich

Police found paw prints consistent with cougars in the area

Saanich passenger caught smoking weed in a car issued $230 fine

Saanich police did a field sobriety test on the driver and deemed it safe for him to drive

B.C. Guide dogs is looking for volunteer puppy raisers

Labrador retrievers need to learn obedience and socialization before heading to work

WATCH: Twelve Angry Jurors puts a new spin on an old tale

Canadian College of Performing Arts opens season with reworked version of Reginald Rose teleplay

Crime Stoppers most wanted for Greater Victoria for Oct. 19

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

POLL: Do you support amalgamation for communities in the Capital Region?

Residents in Victoria and Saanich will be voting on Oct. 20 on… Continue reading

MLA to become Nanaimo’s next mayor, could weaken NDP’s grasp on power

Leonard Krog’s win will trigger a byelection when he gives up his provincial seat

Horvat nets OT winner as Canucks beat Bruins 2-1

Young Vancouver star had spirited scrap earlier in contest

Team Canada gold medal winners for first time in world curling championship

Team Canada earned gold in Kelowna at the 2018 Winn Rentals World Mixed Curling Championship

Payette invites critics to ‘come and spend a few days’ with her

Governor General Julie Payette made her first official to B.C. back in March

More pot stores expected in B.C. in coming ‘weeks and months’: attorney general

Attorney General David Eby and Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth visited the new BC Cannabis Store in the province’s Interior

Telus launches charitable foundation to help vulnerable youth

The Telus Friendly Future Foundation complements other social initiatives by the company, including Mobility for Good

Most Read