MORRISTOWN, N.J., Jan. 18, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- A Berkeley Township, N.J., resident is the winner of Jersey Central Power & Light's (JCP&L) third annual "Merry & Bright" Holiday Lights Photo Contest, a competition conducted on the JCP&L Facebook page.
Grand prize winner Tom Makowski received more than 2,840 votes out of more than 8,200 total votes cast on Facebook. He will receive a $250 gift card.
"Once again, participants in our 'Merry & Bright' Holiday Lights Photo Contest developed some of the most spectacular holiday scenes in northern and central New Jersey," said Mark Jones, vice president, External Affairs, JCP&L. "Thank you to everyone who took the time to visit our Facebook page to enter the contest and vote for their favorite display."
Customers were encouraged to submit photos of their homes' outdoor lighting displays on the JCP&L Facebook page during the first several weeks of December. Ten finalists were selected from all entries, and visitors to JCP&L's Facebook page voted to select the winners.
When Makowski began decorating his home for the holidays, he started with 17,000 lights and five lawn figures. Each year, his daughter challenged him to double the display, and in 2015 he included 70,000 lights and more than 125 lawn figures.
Other unique features included a 17-foot Christmas tree, a dancing Santa and all nine reindeer on the roof. He also added six dancing trees on the lawn, two of which were 20 feet tall and used 9,600 lights each. Also new to the display this year was the popular Elf on the Shelf, which moved to a different spot each day.
Makowski said he has already accepted his daughter's challenge to double the display to 140,000 lights in 2016.
"I have been working on an exciting addition to the display for two years, and expect it to be completed and fully programmed by next November. It's a surprise," said Makowski. "We would like to thank JCP&L for selecting our home as a finalist, and everyone who voted for us on Facebook."
First prize winner Brandon Gress of Union Beach, N.J., received 2,746 votes on Facebook and will be awarded a $100 gift card.
JCP&L is a subsidiary of FirstEnergy Corp. (NYSE: FE). JCP&L serves 1.1 million New Jersey customers in the counties of Burlington, Essex, Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex, Monmouth, Morris, Ocean, Passaic, Somerset, Sussex, Union and Warren. Follow JCP&L on Twitter @JCP_L, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/JCPandL, or online at www.jcp-l.com.
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SOURCE FirstEnergy Corp.