A Holiday Tradition, ‘Christmas on Chelsea’

Freeport, Illinois — If you happen to be driving on Rt. 26 north between the city of Cedarville and Freeport you might notice a shining glow off in the east. It isn’t a UFO, it isn’t another booming metropolis off in the distance; it’s a destination you’ll want to take a moment to drive past called, “Christmas on Chelsea”.

Since 2009 a local family tradition called “Christmas on Chelsea” has been the hotspot for a spectacular holiday light display. One that leaves thousands of people in awe who experience its Christmas magic.

“Christmas on Chelsea” is a home located at 703 Chelsea Court that boasts nearly 30,000 lights on the house, in trees and on displays all throughout the property. Sightseeing guests can tune their radio to 99.5 FM and listen to holiday music and narration as the annual display lights up the street and neighborhood.

As part of the annual display, the homeowners, Ray and Terri Mathews, take donations each year. Outside the holiday display of lights is a secure, locked donation box at the end of the driveway. All the donations go to the FACC.

To get there, on Rt. 26 north, turn East at Forreston Bank, (Fairview Rd) then take the 2nd street to the left. “Christmas on Chelsea” is down a few houses on the right. Shut off your headlights and tune your radio to 99.5 FM.

Runs thru New Year’s Day.

From 2014:

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Photo: Cindy Heitkam

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