Topaz shines

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas around Topaz Ranch Estates as one by one, houses appear in the dark of night, brightly decorated with multiple colors of lights and fanciful characters of every shape and description. In one yard on Topaz Ranch Road across from Hematite Court, Eeyore, of "Winnie the Pooh" fame, stands guard at the entrance to the driveway. Up and down the main roads of TRE is a wonderful mix of themes from religious, with traditional crosses and nativity scenes, to snowmen, Santas, reindeer and elves galore.

Monday night a friend and I took a little ride after sunset so we could enjoy some of the decorating efforts. There were so many wonderfully imaginative ideas but two in particular were my favorites. As we were going down Topaz Ranch Road, there was a home on the next road up, the Stribling home on Eagle Mountain Road, decorated from one end to the other to look like Santa's North Pole chateau, complete with workshop, toy shop and walkways lined with candy canes. The only thing missing was Rudolph and snow. A whole lot of work and kudos to Tom Stribling for a beautiful job well done and something for all of us to enjoy.

Another decorated yard that is fun to look at is the home of our retired volunteer fire chief, Ronna Hubbard and her husband Greg. A life-size inflated and lighted Santa on a motorcycle along with another large Santa and a Christmas bear grace their front yard. The "biker Santa" was of particular interest because the Hubbards belong to a Christian motorcycle club so Santa represented one of their favorite pastimes.

For an enjoyable evening, take some time after the sun goes down and see all the wonderful Christmas displays in our area. It's a fun and relaxing ride, guaranteed to chase any hint of the "Christmas Grinch" away.

n At the lake:

Some fun holiday events are planned for Topaz Lodge and Casino for the next couple of weeks.

Tonight there will be music to dance to in the main lounge provided by the Robeys. Christmas weekend will be the rockin' country sounds of Buffalo Country, Dec. 22-23 from 8 p.m. to 1 a.m. and New Year's Eve will be the annual "Crab Fest" in the buffet room located on the lower level of the lodge with entertainment and dancing in the main floor lounge starting at 8 p.m. provided by Class Act.

Don't forget New Year's Day is the opening day of the annual Topaz Fishing Derby which will continue through April 15. The lake has been stocked with some "beauties," 6 pounds and better, to challenge the best angler. Remember, too, that some of these fish have been tagged for an instant cash win of up to $1,000 and any tagged fish, still in the lake from last year, if caught, will be honored for the cash amount of the tag.

Plenty of fun entertainment and it's all close to home so there is no need to drive very far to have a good time.

Until next week ... just keep on, keepin' on.

n Jonni Hill can be reached through The Record-Courier at or by calling 782-5121, ext. 213, or after hours at


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