Now that Thanksgiving is behind us, you’ll probably start seeing more Christmas lights around town. There are many wonderful displays in Billings, but perhaps none beat the choreographed light show at Fuller Family Medicine on the west side of town.
It’s a beautiful sight and sound for anyone driving past Fuller Family Medicine at this time of year, but for Brad Fuller, it’s about more than just Christmas lights.
“Oh man, it’s been 30 years or more that we’ve been doing it, between my dad and me,” Fuller said.
It started when Brad was in 8th grade. His father, Dean Fuller, decorated their childhood home here in Billings, and Brad and his brother helped. Brad kept coming back and helped through college and even medical school.
Finally, it was Brad’s turn to carry on the tradition.
“He settled down a little bit and I started doing it at my house,” Fuller said. “When I built this building I was like ‘Ah ha!’ I have a perfect location to keep the lights on.
12 years later, and the show is better than ever. Fuller has hung almost every light over the years, but not without a little help.
“For the past 3 years my wife Angela has helped me,” Fuller said. “Hallelujah, because it’s getting so cold and detailed you need someone to help you.”
Hanging above a thousand lights is a time-consuming job, but Angela said it’s actually something they look forward to.
“We’re having a really great time,” Angela Fuller said. “We joke that we have rooftop dates. It’s really become a family affair.”
The couple, with the help of their five children, go through the process together every fall. To avoid some of the cold weather, they start hanging lights in October. Although, the lights don’t come on until the Saturday after Thanksgiving.
For Brad, it’s a tradition that’s really around.
“Our five-year-old Winston, he was working on this big ribbon tree,” Angela said. “And he said, ‘Dad, how old were you when you started making Christmas lights?’ And it was kind of a circular moment for him, like ‘you know I was about your age.’”
It’s a show that many families around Billings look forward to, and continue to watch every year, not knowing how much work goes into it.
“I always say he’s a rocket scientist with Christmas lights, and he really is,” Angela said. “Every beat of every second, every part of every song is so intricately choreographed. My brain isn’t like that. His brain is amazing.”
Brad said it’s a tradition he hopes his dad and family can be proud of – a light show with no end in sight.
“I remember growing up, helping my dad around his house, and we got cards that said, Wow, this really meant a lot,” Brad said. “And so, it’s kind of that positive feedback that keeps you going.”