Kenosha natives Dale and Barbara Wiegele receive countless compliments for their spectacular Christmas display that’s provided over 25 years of holiday spirit at their southside residence.
And the high praise doesn’t end in January.
“It’s all year long,” Barbara Wiegele said. “We’ll be out mowing the lawn and someone will yell ‘I love your house at Christmas!’”
The compliments continue in October when veteran trick-or-treaters stop at the beautiful, brown cedar house for full-size candy bars.
“When they come to the door, parents will tell us they can’t wait to see our house at Christmas,” Dale Wiegele said. “It’s a lot of fun. And a lot of pressure. You don’t want to disappoint.”
Capturing nearly 600 of the 2,485 votes in Kenosha.com‘s annual Holiday Spirit Contest, the Wiegeles’ winter wonderland is this year’s overall winner. The house, located at 7951 33rd Ave., features over 25,000 LED lights and is customized each year with a variety of decor.
Dale Wiegele, a 1979 Tremper High School graduate, has been accumulating new lights and decorations since he had the property built in 1996. A custom Christmas tree display was added to the south side of the home this year.
One popular piece, which appears every few years, is Santa flying an airplane pulling a 20-foot “Happy Holidays” banner.
“We started decorating 35 years ago when our kids (Brian Wiegele and Brenda Popp) were little,” Dale said. “When we built this house in 1996, we already amassed a lot of lights.”
The Wiegeles’ biggest struggle was having too many lights.
“Those incandescent bulbs draw a lot of current,” Dale said. “You’d hit the garage door opener and the power would go out. We battled that for years. We eventually switched it over to LEDs and that’s worked out great. We don’t have to measure current anymore.”
Dale and Barbara grew up just blocks from their home, known by many local residents as “The Gingerbread House.” Childhood sweethearts and married for 40 years, Barbara is a longtime Kenosha Unified School District educator and Dale is a product designer for BRP in Sturtevant.
Decorating during the holidays has always brought special memories to their lives.
“Every year it gets a little harder, but we enjoy doing it,” Dale said. “We’ll probably retire in a couple of years. We often joke we’ll put our house for sale at Christmas time and say it’s being sold ‘as-is’.”
7951 33rd Ave. – 588 votes
Owners: Dale and Barbara Wiegele
- “My favorite Christmas house in the entire world.” – Marilynn Simpson
- “My three-year-old loves this one, even in the daylight. He points and gets excited to see it every time we drive down 80th (Street)!” – Kayla Ervin
- “Always my favorite in the neighborhood.” – Sue Apostoli
- “Better every year.” – Gail Lee
- “Every year they never disappoint. So festive and full of love.” – Dawn Bella
- “Nothing makes me think of Christmas more than this house.” – Emily Meidinger
- “Beautiful! Like a perfect holiday picture postcard. Love it.” – Sharon Morgan
- “The gingerbread house is always our favorite.” – Leslie Richter
- “They have been adding more for the last 25-plus years. Love it too.” – Debbie Edwards
6834 106th Ave. – 463 votes
Owners: James and Carri Kiehl
- “This is the obvious winner. The others are all beautiful but this has SO MUCH going on. A true ‘Feaste’ for the eyes!” – Jen Doctor-Lallo
- “The Kiehls always do an awesome job. I stopped the other night to show a friend who was with me and had never seen. Thank you for brightening up our River Crossing ‘hood’!” – Jerin Mueller-Moore
- “No contest! Hands down the best!” – Kristie Kruse
- “No competition. This will always be my favorite!” – Macenzie Ann Liddell
- “It wouldn’t be Christmas without this display! Thank you Kiehls.” – Lesa Stephens-Vijesurier
- “35,000 lights. This is by far the best.” – Erica Parent
6409 103rd Ave. – 227 votes
Owners: Henry and Addie Spates
- “Henry’s house is the greatest.” – Romona Williams
- “We’ve been enjoying their festive lights and decorating for all the holidays for over 20 years! So happy to have such wonderful neighbors and friends!” – Jodi Valukas Kuhl
- “My kids’ favorite!! We call it ‘The Gingerbread House’.” – Lesa Stephens-Vijesurier
- “Best house in Kenosha! It’s just beautiful.” – Ana Mendoza
- “We love Henry’s home! He does something for every holiday!” – Tay Jusits
- “I think this is going to be the winner!! Good job!” – Jerimy Taylor
1913 30th St. – 210 votes
Owners: Jordan and Rayna Murry
- “The present just makes the display pop.” – Cindy Craig
- “Love this one!” – Adela Lebron Hessefort
- “Fabulous job!” – Jay Misurelli
- “Beautiful! Two blocks away from my childhood home.” – Joy Jensen Klockow
- “I love the large ornament in the yard!” – Carolyn Fronsee
5708 68th St. – 163 votes
Owner: Michael and Alyssa Sturino
- “I love this house! We have been by two or three times this year!” – MaryBeth Migliore
- “Best of Christmas Lane.” – Katie Lacucci
- “Brings back memories of Christmas decorations that are traditional.” – Bob Sturino
- “I am in love. This is a lot of blow molds.” – Kathy Wooden Humphres
- “Love this Michael. Definitely a lot of work.” – Lori Hoppenjan Marinelli