Downtown Waterville is now ablaze with thousands of Christmas lights to celebrate the 2023 holiday season. Kaleb Pushard, owner of SkyBox Holiday and Event Lighting in Manchester, has volunteered to decorate the trees and Kringleville cabin in Castonguay Square for free this year. Pushard’s love of Christmas lights started when as a young adult he saw a local light display set to sound, and was so fascinated by it he immediately started researching how to do it himself. Over the course of a few years he learned about lighting effects and installation, and used these new talents to decorate his family’s business in Manchester - Maine Isshinryu Karate Academies. This was the beginning of his light decorating business that would grow to be SkyBox Holiday and Event lighting.
Today, SkyBox hires seasonal employees to work on both commercial and residential lighting. With training and certification from a national light installation company, Pushard helps lead the team with his vision and expertise. With four years of professional experience, SkyBox has taken on many projects such as municipal lighting and the tree lighting ceremony for the Town of Manchester, the Winter Wonderland at Augusta West Campground, lighting the Olde Federal Building in Augusta, and many residential holiday light displays. Pushard says that each display is unique and that it’s hard to pick a favorite, but that he enjoys taking his client’s requests and translating them into amazing scenes.
This year in Castonguay Square, SkyBox is lighting up the Kringleville Cabin to make free visits with Santa even more joyful. They have also decorated the trees and lamp posts in the square. Pushard estimates that this took several thousand feet of light strands, along with specialty lighting effects, to accomplish. The square was set alight at the end of the Parade of Lights on Saturday November 26th.
When asked why SkyBox is donating the time, equipment and labor to install these lights, Pushard says that it’s a way to spread joy and cheer. “A lot of people are down mentally and spiritually this time of the year, and lighting is a way to boost spirits. It makes a big difference for people during the holidays.” He mentions that in the past, people have shared personal stories with him about how much the light displays mean to them. And making a difference in this way is his favorite thing to do.