Merry and Bright Holiday Home Challenge winners announced

COOKEVILLE – Winners of the fifth annual Merry and Bright Holiday Home Challenge are getting some extra green this Christmas – as in cash prizes.

The contest, presented by Cookeville Leisure Services and Upper Cumberland Association of Realtors (UCAR) , had the most entries to date with 28 homes. All competitors were included in a Christmas Tour of Lights map that is available free to the community.

“It is a special tradition for each family that enters as well as families in the community who get to use the map,” Sally Herren, Cookeville Leisure Services Recreation Programmer, said. “Even if I wasn’t involved with the contest, my family would still go to each house on the map and see all the hard work that was put into making these homes festive.”

Carol Glover of UCAR said, “This year’s entries were absolutely the best yet. The bar just keeps getting higher. It was very difficult to choose winners. Thank you to everyone who entered our fifth season. It is a pure joy to see everyone’s displays, so I thank you all for making the season magical.”

Cash prizes were awarded in four categories: Merry and Bright, Holly Jolly, Classic Christmas and Griswold Award. First place received $100; second place, $50; and honorable mention, $25. Additional prizes included $100 for Best Newcomer and $50 for the People’s Choice social media award winner on the Cookeville Leisure Services Department Facebook page.

Winners are as follows:

Merry and Bright

First Place – Travis and Tonya Lee of 4536 Ewing Dr., Baxter. 

Second Place – Matthew and Leslie Reep of 1661 New Hope Dr.

Holly Jolly

First Place – Josh and Jennifer Bauer of 365 Westgate Dr.

Second Place – David Bebko of 3213 Haney Dr.

Honorable Mention – Danny and Angela Roberts of 487 Peach Orchard Road.

Classic Christmas

First Place – Brandon and Lindsey Gross of 1130 Country Club Road.

Second Place – Robert and Charlene Sealy of 2530 Zeb Warren Road.

Griswold Award

First Place – Buddy and Amy Pearson of 6905 Cookeville Boatdock Road.

Honorable Mention – Kevin Friedberg of 1155 N. Franklin Ave.

Best Newcomer Award

Winner – Ruth McMahon of 800 Spring Valley Road.

People’s Choice Social Media Award

Winner – Kevin Friedberg of 1155 N. Franklin Ave.

“Each year becomes more special,” Herren said. “I hope the Merry and Bright Holiday Home Challenge continues to grow and that more families get involved with decorating their homes for all the community to see and enjoy.”

The Merry and Bright Tour of Lights map is available at the Cookeville Municipal Building, 45 E. Broad St., and HERE. For more information, call 931-520-4386.

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