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Vandals don't deter man's holiday spirit

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I saw this in this mornings paper. Don't know if he's a PCer or not. Note that security lights do help. Link and the Story is below:

(It's also my first attempt at posting)


Vandals don 't deter man 's holiday spirit

By Valerie Rowell

Staff Writer

Harvey Hayes puts a lot of effort, money and pride into holiday displays at his Evans home.

Jim Blaylock/Staff

Harvey Hayes' Halloween display was vandalized at about 3:45 a.m. Sunday. He said a black Ford Expedition occupied by teenagers has been going past his house repeatedly.

But after vandals attempted to destroy the Halloween display last weekend, he considered ending the musical dancing light show.

"If it wasn't for my wife, it would be in the trash can right now," Hayes said. "That's how fed up I was."

At nearly 4 a.m. Oct. 25, Hayes' wife was up with their sick daughter when she heard noises in front of the Hardy Point Drive home. She saw a black Ford Expedition parked out front with teens inside and a teen girl ripping decorations out of the yard.

Hayes said his wife yelled and threatened to call the police.

"They just laughed and took off," Hayes said. "When she woke me up, I was livid."

Hayes, an electrical engineer, spent hours meshing about $5,000 worth of equipment and materials into a hand-crafted display that dances to his own private radio broadcast.

"We can make those lights do anything we want," Hayes said, adding his Halloween decorating started 14 years ago with two real pumpkins and alternating flashing lights.

The music, which includes Michael Jackson's Thriller , and themes from The Addams Family , the Saw movies and Halloween films, is played through speakers until 9 p.m., but the lights continue their dance. The music can still be heard from radios set to 106.5 FM.

The only permanent damage to the display was a cracked sign. Other decorations were kicked over or tossed around the yard, Hayes said.

Hayes started recreating the display after the Columbia County sheriff's deputy left in the early morning hours.

But the Hayes family hadn't seen the last of the vandals. Hayes' 9-year-old daughter, Stephanie, spotted the same black SUV stopped at the home. When they saw her, Hayes said the SUV sped away.

The vehicle returned again early the next morning while Hayes was still awake, but sped away when the home's security lights came on.

Hayes said with the large displays on July Fourth, Halloween and Christmas, he's used to seeing vehicles drive by to enjoy the light displays. But on Tuesday, a teen girl stopped to talk to him, anonymously.

"She said on Monday morning at Evans High School, the only discussion going on in the halls was the destruction of my Halloween display," said Hayes.

But the vandalism isn't the first. A few years ago, after an alarm in one of his outdoor light control panels went off, Hayes said he saw a man with a knife cutting his wires.

"These guys were stealing copper cable thinking they could make some money," Hayes said.

But the occasional negative attention doesn't seem to discourage Hayes.

Some neighbors have even offered money to help defray the costs of the display. Hayes said he simply asks them to donate to the "It's Spooky to be Hungry" food drive or a charity of their choice.

"It is still a lot of fun," Hayes said. "I do it to try to cheer people up or remind them now is a good time that if they've got some good merit, to share it with others."

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sounds like it's would be time to offer a reward for info on the vandals names. if the kids at the high school are talking about it, they will turn thier backs on each other for a quick and easy $100

Make it 1000 and money will beat friendship, 100 nowadays isn't worth as much as it used to be

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