GOWEN, Mich.,-- David White is Amway's December Pay it Forward Person of the Month. For five years, White has created and operated a breathtaking holiday light show to bring smiles to people across West Michigan, while raising money for charity.
Dubbed White's Winter Wonderland, thousands have made the drive to his Gowen home located at 14181 Macclain Street.
"It's our Christmas gift to the community," said White. "Every year, we get a little bigger, a little bigger and bigger."
White begins creating the display in September. After weeks of planning and plugging in hundreds of thousands of LED lights, the extravagant display is officially open to the public for free, from Thanksgiving night through New Years Eve.
White has even synced the show to holiday favorites, creating somewhat of a "drive-thru movie" experience for visitors. He often personally greets those who come to see the show; and everyone who comes receives a candy cane.
"They think I'm kidding when I say we spend more on candy canes, then extra power to run the show," White told FOX 17 News. "I tell people, if you see the smiles we see every night, if [the light bill] cost us a thousand, we'd still do it."
A "Snoopy" figurine collects any donations that visitors wish to leave. The money is then used to buy toys and other items for children in need. White estimates as many as 400 kids are helped each year from those donations through various charities, like Toys for Tots and their local Huntington Bank's "Christmas Giving Tree" program.
White and his wife usually pick up the expense up front earlier in the season to make sure they receive their gifts in time.
"We spend it, comes out of our pocket," he explained. "You hope to get it back and we can at least get close. If we don't, we don't and that's fine. But that's the risk we take. It's a good cause."
White's Winter Wonderland is open from 6-10pm Sunday-Thursday, and 6-11pm Friday and saturday. It's located at 14181 Macclain Street, Gowen, MI 49326.
To learn more about the show, visit its Facebook page here.