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Milwaukee non-profit turns donated Christmas lights into holiday displays

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MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- Now's the time where many people are getting rid of their Christmas trees, but what about those old holiday lights?

There's a place in Milwaukee that'll take them, and create some awe-inspiring displays.

How you dispose of your tree depends on where you live.

In cities like Greenfield, Wauwatosa or Whitefish Bay, it’s fine to drop your tree at the curb for garbage pick up. Milwaukee is the same, and like other area communities, encourages folks to recycle them.

Check your city’s website or call if you’re unsure, and once your tree is gone, it’s time to think about those lights.

“You’re looking at other donated items, the gift boxes, deer, trees," Terry Witkowski, chairperson of the Garden District Neighborhood Association said. 

For three years now, Milwaukee’s Garden District has been filled with gently used lights and others fixtures from the community.

“If you’ve got a display or you’ve got lights to donate, working outdoor lights or displays, we’ll take ‘em," he added.

They'll take them, and transform them into 240-ft light tunnels and scenes that’ll create lasting memories. 

Witkowski said their Winter Wonderland brings families together.

"The Garden District is a non-profit, and we’re just trying to improve the quality of life for people here in the city and people in the area.”

If you have any working outdoor lights, holiday lights or displays to give, you can come out the next two Saturdays, Jan. 4 and Jan. 11.

People from the Garden District will accept donations at 6th and Norwich, across from the water tower, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Lights for Winter Wonderland begin around sundown. This year's display ends on Jan 6. 

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