OLD BRIDGE, N.J. (WTXF) - A controversy is brewing in the Garden State over one homeowner’s Christmas decorations and now he has to pay a hefty fee to keep his display going.
Old Bridge Township, New Jersey is demanding Tom Apruzzi pay up, but the 44-year resident iusn’t having it.
Driving down Central Avenue in Old Bridge one can’t miss the Christmas spirit - twinkling archways, floating snowflakes and small crowds huddle together waiting to snap a picture of Apruzzi’s winter wonderland.
For 15 years, the Old Bridge resident has put on a massive 70,000 Christmas light show. But, this year, instead of attracting visitors, the display brought out what Tom calls “Holiday Scrooges.”
“I mean, what else can you have? It’s Christmas lights. I mean, who wouldn’t be happy seeing Christmas lights?” asked Apruzzi.
Well, the Township, for one. Mayor Owen Henry, in a recent statement, said Tom will need to pay up – roughly $2,000 a night.
“I have always held the same position stating that the show was a go, but with proper safety measures.”
“I’m not, if you want public safety on the streets, you are going to have to take care of public safety. You are the police. That’s your job,” said Tom.
Tom says the show isn’t a business, it’s a tribute to his late father, a veteran and Christmas lover, who couldn’t afford holiday lights growing up. So, now it’s go big or go home.
The family is not backing down. They have begun an online fundraiser with a goal of $75,000. Tom says the funds will be split between charity and township fees.
“The GoFundMe page is going to homes for our troops. We are not going to tolerate the township with them trying to bully us,” Apruzzi stated.