There is no doubt about it — Claude Paquet loves Christmas.
A person would have to in order to spend the amount of time he does decorating his Wahnapitae home for the holidays. His 112-foot-wide lot on Roseland Drive is a veritable winter wonderland of lights and displays that he hopes injects a little Christmas spirit into all who see it.
The challenge is, not a lot of people get to see it.
“It’s only 15 or 20 minutes from downtown and 10 or 12 minutes from New Sudbury,” the retired miner told Northern Life. “And I add new stuff every year.”
There was a time, Paquet said, that buses carrying city nursing home residents would tour passed his place in December, but that was years ago. Now, he’s hoping to get the word out about all his holiday work so others will make the short drive to tour his property. (“At their own risk,” he stressed.)
“I like to do it,” he said. “You have to like it, otherwise you couldn’t do it.”
He hopes that not only will people get some holiday spirit from seeing the fruits of his labour, but also that it will give some cheer to those feeling blue during the season.
An experience several years ago reinforced what a few lights can do.
“There was a woman parked in her car outside for 45 minutes,” he said. “I thought she had car trouble."
When he went out to see if she needed assistance, the woman told him she was feeling sad and lonely because her boyfriend was working in Africa, so she parked in front of his house to bask in the Christmas cheer, raise her spirits and write her man a letter.
“I know it’s doing good,” Paquet said.
Folks can find the Paquet residence at 143 Roseland Dr. in Wahnapitae.
When you get to the bottom of the hill in the community, take a left onto Mountainview. The next left is Roseland. The Paquet house is the first one on the right.
It’s kind of hard to miss.