COLUMBUS, Ga. (WRBL) – The Ludy Christmas Spectacular is a fan favorite across the Chattahoochee Valley, with children waiting patiently each year for the new additions to the grand display. 

But this year’s display took a somber turn just before Christmas Eve, when owner, Jerry Ludy’s largest project to date – a 30-foot Ferris Wheel adorned with teddy bears – fell over due to the Arctic front.

“Am I going to rebuild it? I don’t know,” said Ludy. “There’s a lot of work that has to start from scratch because it really destroyed the framework on it.”

The Ludy Family started the tradition close to 30 years ago in 1995. The display remains near and dear to Ludy’s heart, being that he’s enjoyed Christmas lights since his mother used to take him as a child.

But I know the joy that it brought,” said Ludy. “So that’s what’s important to me, just to see what joy it did bring. I just unfortunately, it happened a couple of days before Christmas when the children that could see it, not able to see it now.”

Ludy had been working on the 8-seater Ferris Wheel since January 2020. Even through the disappointment of seeing the project tumble over, Ludy’s Christmas spirit remains unshaken.

“Well, it had to happen at some point,” said Ludy. “It disappointed me because I knew the work that I put into it.”

While Ludy is disappointed that the Ferris Wheel was short-lived, he prefers to look at the positive, knowing that it could have gone much worse. 

“I know that I’m not alone in this,” said Ludy. “I look at all the homes that were destroyed during the storms in this past year, and I look at all the people that are suffering right now, even today with the cold, they don’t have what I have. But I look at the display. It’s just lights, but the experience… It brings me joy.”

While this year’s Spectacular didn’t turn out quite as planned, Ludy and Santa Claus have new additions to the display in the works for 2023. You’ll have to just wait and see.