When the sun goes down on Eagle View Place in Concord, the lights come on.
Glowing seals play on a slide above a blue pond made from rope lights. Icicle lights hang from the gutters, and sparkling reindeer turn their heads as cars pass by.
The yard is full of lights - more than 1,000 of them - and it's the doing of Ben Wirtel, a 15-year-old Jay M. Robinson High School freshman, who has a knack for Christmas lights.
"I've just always loved Christmas," Ben said recently at his home.
It took him about three days to put up all the decorations, which have been up since before Thanksgiving.
"We're afraid planes at Charlotte Douglas Airport will start landing here," said Bernie Wirtel, Ben's dad.
When he and his sister, Madisen, were younger, their mother let them pick out decorations for the yard.
"I always wanted the perfect yard, and I didn't want this or that," said JoeAnn Wirtel. "But with children, I gave that up."
Ben said he remembers picking out a stand-up of Santa and his reindeer with lights around the edges, but his decorations have become much more elaborate over the years.
Now white lights line the street in front of his house, and lights twinkle to the tune of Christmas songs played by a box into which the lights are plugged.
To purchase the lights, Ben used about $500 of his own money, which he earned by mowing neighborhood lawns. He started scouring stores last year, picking out lights for his home's yard. The Wirtels had to clean out their attic to make room for all the lights.
Ben's 82-year-old grandmother, Martha McAllister, lives with Ben and his family. She loves the glowing display in the front yard.
"I think it's wonderful," she said. "I'm amazed he can do all this."
Ben's decorations light up the whole street, but neighbors don't seem to mind.
"I think he's discouraged some people from putting them up," Bernie said, laughing.
Ben has an eye for Christmas lights, and his mom said he often critiques other people's yard displays.
"I see stuff I wouldn't do," he said.
He likes Christmas lights in simple, straight lines. He's a bit of a perfectionist, he admitted.
Ben, who played junior varsity football this year, wants to become a landscape architect someday.
His dad said he's proud of his son, noting his initiative.
"He's got his own ideas," he said. "He's got goals."
There are still more lights in the attic, and Ben has a few more additions in mind.
"I'd like to put red lights on the house," he said.
The family plans to move to a bigger house - with a bigger yard.
That means more Christmas lights, said Ben, grinning.
"The only thing I'll have to do is pay the electric bill," Bernie said.