How Many Lights Would a Maine House Need to Be Seen From Space?
Most of us have seen the scene in National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation where Clark W. Griswold covers his house with so many Christmas lights that, when they are turned on, they blind their yuppy neighbors. On top of that, the sheer number of lights takes down the local power grid. How many light did he put on the house? According to Black Hills Energy, he stapled 25,000 lights on his home!
If the story were real, there is no doubt that the Griswold household would have been visible from space. Right?
Yeah, actually, that is right. It takes a surprisingly small number of lights in order for a home (or any building, really) to be seen by the space station, satellites, or other orbiting craft.
According to The Daily Mail, it would take over 2,600 LED lights for your Christmas decorations to be visible from orbit.
Honestly, that seems a little low.
To put that all in perspective, the Winter Wonderland lights display at Augusta West Kampground has about 200,000 lights, and Gardens Aglow at the Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens in Boothbay has about 750,000 lights.
If you are still in the process of putting up your lights, please be careful. Hundreds of people in the US are injured each day during the holiday season by falling off ladders. Also, be care to use extension cords appropriately. There is not worse way to end the holidays than by burning down your home.
Honestly, maybe you'd be better off just going to Augusta West's Winter Wonderland, Gardens Aglow, or one of the other amazing lights displays in New England.