ROCKFORD, Minn. (WCCO) -- Several elaborate Christmas displays were destroyed overnight Saturday into Sunday in a community northwest of the Twin Cities.
The Wright County sheriff's office said at least three homeowners reported their displays were vandalized in the city of Rockford. Authorities are looking for leads.
One of those homeowners told WCCO he will not let a real-life Grinch steal his Christmas spirit.
Since moving to his Rockford home in 1985, Dwight Heairet has tried every year to bring holiday cheer to his neighborhood.
Preparing for weeks, he spent about 25 hours assembling nearly 50,000 lights and 192 extension cords to help create the display. The lights from the display are set to various Christmas songs, which took Heairet about 10 hours per song to synchronize.
"I enjoy doing because I'm a geek," Heairet joked. "It's my hobby."
His own children are grown up now, so Heairet does the display for other families.
"It's usually the same cars because I think the kids talk their parents into coming back every night," Heairet said.
On Saturday night around 11:30, Heairet happened to look outside and saw someone had trampled through and knocked over most of his work.
It was just the second night the display was on for passers-by this season.
"It's Christmas, you're not supposed to do that," Heairet said. "I guess you need a Grinch."
People have vandalized his holiday displays a few times in past years and Heairet said it cost him hundreds of dollars.
Just when Heairet was thinking of no longer doing the display, his grown children reminded him that he could not let anyone take away his Christmas spirit.
"I try to do this for the community and most of them like it," he said. "I hope the people who did this can find other ways to use their energy."
Heairet fixed his light display within hours and it will be on every night through New Year's Eve from 5 to 10 p.m. along Walnut Street in Rockford.
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