The holiday season is well underway and that means it is time once again for Pedernales Electric Cooperative to turn on its world-famous lights and brighten up the hill country.

Caroline Tinsley Porter of Pedernales Electric Cooperative joined Studio 512 Co-Host Rosie Newberry to tell us more about their incredible display, and about how they give back to the community.

PEC’s holiday light display is a free, family-friendly activity to help get into the holiday spirit. Tell us about the lights and what visitors can expect.

“We have dozens of gorgeous oak trees on campus. You can see them behind me and they’re wrapped in lights which when they turn on create one of the most iconic and well-recognized holiday scenes in Texas. Here at our headquarters alone, we have 1.3 million lights. We look forward to welcoming families to walk under these oaks, snap photos, make memories, and experience the magic.”

“In the town square, there will be additional holiday lights visitors can enjoy, they can shop from local vendors, and watch the fireworks show from the Blanco courthouse. So there’s plenty to enjoy.”

Tell us about how long this tradition has been going on.

“We’re all very excited here to kick off the holidays. PEC has been lighting our headquarters here for more than 30 years and this is one of our favorite traditions. We brought power to the Texas Hill Country 80 years ago.”

The lights are free, as you mentioned, but in the spirit of the holidays and giving back to the community, PEC is doing something new this year to support nonprofits in the Texas Hill Country and Central Texas. How can visitors help?

“That’s right, the lights are free but visitors have the opportunity to make a one-time donation to help nonprofits through PEC’s Power Of Change Program. This program helps PEC provide community grants to nonprofits and educational foundations that help strengthen our communities with much-needed services and support.”

“Giving back is part of what makes us unique as a cooperative. We call it the cooperative difference. We are committed to showing concern for the community and it’s really what makes us more than just an ordinary utility.”

“Since we started the program in 2016, we’ve provided over $300,000 in community support with the help of our PEC members. Now we look forward to expanding the program by inviting visitors to donate and help support our communities.”

That’s wonderful. And you’ve made it easy to help with signs and QR codes that will be out at the lights, right?

“Yes, we’ve made it easy to give back. Anyone who wants to donate, visitors to the lights if they want to help can make a one-time donation via Venmo @PECPowerofChange.”

“And if you’re a PEC member, you can make a one-time donation or sign up online to have your monthly bills rounded up to the nearest dollar to benefit nonprofits. You can learn more and enroll at PEC.Coop/Change. The average donation for those who round up is less than $1 per month, so it’s really a small and simple way to help make a big difference.”

This segment is paid for by Pedernales Electric Cooperative and is intended as an advertisement. Opinions expressed by the guest(s) on this program are solely those of the guest(s) and are not endorsed by this television station.