After 50 years of cultivating an unforgettable Christmas experience in the heart of Florida, Vincent Poloniak is turning off the lights of his annual holiday display for good.
“It’s getting harder and harder. It takes a village to put together,” Poloniak said. “I wish I could continue, but it’s just getting too difficult...I’ll really miss it.”
The tradition began half a century ago in 1972, when Poloniak’s daughter Paula asked her parents for Christmas decorations.
“She saw decorations out and asked, ‘Daddy why can’t we have Christmas decorations?’” recalled Poloniak. “So I went out and carved out a reindeer, a Santa, a sled and a snowman, then painted them up and put them out front.”
The collection grew each year as he continued to build more unique pieces.
Over the decades, the display evolved into a compelling experience for both the community and Poloniak family. By the 1990s, families near and far had heard about the Christmas lights on Spanktown Road. For many, a visit to the Poloniaks’ became a holiday tradition.
“We started going around seven years ago. We continued the tradition of going on Christmas Day when we had our daughters,” said Middletown resident Brittany Decker. “They loved it every time we went. It’s something we always look forward to as a family to cap off our Christmas celebration.”
The decorations take about five weeks to set up. Poloniak aimed to make the 2022 season the best display he has ever had, knowing this would be the final time he lights up Spanktown Rd.
To see the Poloniak holiday display, visit 22 Spanktown Road in Warwick, N.Y. The display is open daily from 4 p.m. - 9 p.m. until Jan. 2.