Trinity Street is located in one of Vancouver’s oldest neighbourhoods: Hasting-Sunrise. Once known as the “Brighton” of Vancouver, houses in this community were weekend beachfront cottages for the those who worked in the mills. As the years passed and the city grew, the area became a very vibrant and culturally diverse place to live.

In the 90s, the community saw more than its fair share of crime. In November 1999, two local residents, Martha Eliot (82) and Nora Davis (84), were murdered in two separate incidents on the nearby Wall Street. After their brutal deaths, residents decided that they’d had enough and it was time to take back the streets.

With some thought they came up with the idea of holding a yearly Christmas lights competition to encourage people to get out and meet their neighbours. It seems to have worked and during the Christmas season visitors come from all over to see the display and old-fashioned mailboxes line the street where you can vote for your favourite house. Ballots cost $2 and can be purchased from the local grocery store (all money raised goes to charity). On weekends, locals sit in front of their houses and hand out hot chocolate and cookies.

These days the Trinity Street Christmas Lights are so popular that the residents had to add a porta potty and set-up parking restrictions. As an observer, it’s best to enjoy the display on foot so you can hear music, see the subtly decorated houses, and meet other people.