It's that magical time of the year when many trees, homes, and buildings across Colorado are adorned with festive, twinkling holiday lights. Places like Old Town, Fort Collins, and Denver's 16th Street Mall transform into true winter wonderlands with sparkling lights glowing on top of the snow.

But did you know that a Coloradan was responsible for creating outdoor Christmas lights?

During the winter of 1914, Denver electrician (and founder of Sturgeon Electric) David Dwight Sturgeon wanted to bring cheer to his ailing 10-year-old son. His sick son was bedridden in the family's home on 34th Street in Denver, unable to get out and experience the joys of the holiday season.

David Sturgeon began by dipping light bulbs in red and green paint. Then, he strung the colorful lights from a pine tree outside the family's residence. The beautiful tree was in perfect view of his son's bedroom window.

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These Christmas lights not only brought joy to Sturgeon's son but also to his neighbors. Soon, people from around town started driving by the Sturgeons' home to see the decorated tree.

With that, Sturgeon's idea spread throughout the Denver area during the early 20th century. Year after year, more Coloradans began to hang Christmas lights outside of their homes. By 1938, lights were hung on Denver's city buildings. Colorado's capital even dubbed itself the "Christmas City," and visitors came from all over the world to see the lights.

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The creation of outdoor Christmas lights also sparked the first outdoor Christmas lighting contest which drew hundreds of participants. In 1945, NBC came to Denver to broadcast a tribute to the Sturgeon family for having originated this joyous tradition.

It should be mentioned that Sturgeon Electric is not credited with creating Christmas lights themselves - we have Thomas Edison to thank for that, but rather for inventing the custom of hanging them outside.

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Over 100 years later, bright outdoor lights have become synonymous with the holiday season. Whether you're religious or not, seeing lights strung throughout our towns and communities provides glimmer and hope during the otherwise dreariest time of the year. And how far the lights have come from just red and green too!

During the winter of 1914, there really was a miracle on 34th Street - all thanks to David Sturgeon's innovative and creative mind.

Check Out Some Amazing Christmas Light Displays

Light Up The Ark-La-Tex powered by SWEPCO is in full swing! Check out all the amazing Christmas and holiday displays from our area. The winner will win $500!

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