A good indication the Dixons have another winning display at their home a mile west of Bainbridge (also a mile east of Shortcut Road) is the audible screeching of tires and brakes as drivers try to slow for a better look at the 810 E. U.S. 36 home on the south side of the highway.
"We've had more than a few people go er-r-r-r-r-r (come to a screeching halt)," Tina Dixon said Sunday after her husband's latest handiwork was judged the winner of the 2011 "Home for the Holidays" Putnam County Lawn Decorating Contest, sponsored by the Greater Greencastle Chamber of Commerce and Greencastle Walmart store.
The Dixons, who receive a $100 gift card from Walmart for winning, took second place in last year's judging.
In fact, all three 2011 places went to contest veterans, Chamber Executive Director Tammy Amor said.
Second place was captured by Greg, Amanda and Evan Huber, 2227 E. CR 1100 South (Golf Course Road), Cloverdale. The Hubers, who will receive a $50 Walmart gift card for second place, were the 2010 winners.
Third place was awarded to Marty, Chris and Shelby Williamson, 1294 CR 350N (Brick Chapel Road), Greencastle. The Williamsons also are former contest winners and have had a number of placings in the past.
Honorable mention entries were noted as Clint and Tammy Farris, 1006 Crown St., Greencastle, and Thomas Chilton, 4573 E. CR 325 South, Greencastle.
The second-place Huber display is marked by lights synchronized to music, while the Williamsons' third-place entry is a festival of lights and decorations that might do Clark Griswold proud.
The Dixons, meanwhile, offer a little bit of everything, from Santa to an igloo to a lighted boat.
Paul Dixon loves decorating his property for the holidays, wife Tina said.
"He starts about the first of November, but he's always thinking about it all year. He makes all the moving things himself. He usually starts creating those every October.
"This is his thing," she added. "This is what he's known for around here."
Daughter Taylor, 12, also helps with ideas and installation for the Dixon display.
This year the Dixons expanded the display after purchasing the property to the immediate west with its pole barn. Inside Paul found an old boat that wasn't good for much but might float as another Christmas decoration, he decided.
"He and a buddy were dragging that boat into the front yard, and I said, 'What are you going to do with that?'" Tina recalled.
"Put lights on it, of course," came Paul's response.
The Dixons routinely shut their lights off at 10 p.m. nightly since it can be a lengthy process unplugging everything, she noted.
This past Saturday, they arrived home about 9:45 after a late dinner and Paul decided to turn off the lights then and there.
"Right about that time a truck went by and slowed way down to look, so he felt real bad about that."
But that wasn't all.
"Then we got texts from two different people who said, 'Bummer, we just drove past your house and your lights were already off.'
"Paul said maybe he needs to start leaving them on until 11 o'clock," Tina said.
And as the Christmas holiday decorating winner, that's probably not a bad idea.
Except maybe for adding to their electric bill. The $100 gift card won't even take care of that.
"Not even close," Tina Dixon laughed.