Round Rock teen decks home with 75K lights to raise money for charity

Williamson County

ROUND ROCK, Texas (KXAN) — A Round Rock high school senior is raising money for a local dog rescue by lighting up 75,000 lights at his house near Dell Diamond.

Cole Gedwillo, a student at Stony Point High School, has constructed the display the last few years, and this is the third year he’s collecting donations for the Helping Hands Basset Hound Rescue.

The 17-year-old strung and programmed all the lights himself, using seven controller boxes to link the light show to six different songs. Observers can tune into a radio station near his house to listen in while the lights flash and dance to the rhythm.

Gedwillo told KXAN he started working on the lights around Halloween this year, and despite problems with lights going out and a controller box not working, it’s his most complex display yet.

He started out just helping his parents decorate the house. “Eventually I just took it over and started doing all the programming,” he said. Over the years it’s gotten bigger and more complex, and now he’s “running out of room” to add more.

Gedwillo has volunteered with the basset hound rescue for since he was much younger, and his aunt fosters dogs through it as well. 

“Once I got older and there was more people coming to see the light show,” he said, “I figured I could do donations for them and then that would be a good way to raise money and give back to the dogs.”

The house, on Sandy Koufax Lane near Dell Diamond, hasn’t seen as much traffic this year as it has in the past. Over the last two holiday seasons, Gedwillo’s collected around $700 for the rescue. 

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