Community Connection: Troy Abfalter talks about Dunedinville
Three years ago, in the wake of personal loss and an unrelenting pandemic, Troy Abfalter of Duluth started to envision something better. “I really missed feeling hope and joy," says Abfalter. ”I needed something to tend that light within, so I started building."
The result is Dunedinville, a sprawling light display across Abfalter’s city property that spills into neighbors' yards – neighbors who’ve been very willing to latch onto the project. The main event of the display is a community gathering on the Sunday night prior to the winter solstice. Families can visit and take in various visual spectacles and interactive structures. “We have things like light tunnels, and photo booths, and firepits, hot coco, music, treehouses, gnomes, snow hills, snow forts, and a sled track.”
Abfalter has plans to keep the display going and to make things "crazier and crazier.” But there’s a bigger objective in mind for the future. “What's our vision for Christmas City of the North 2025? Where are we going from here?" Abfalter has a proposal. "One Bentleyville; 100 neighborhood outdoor holiday gatherings... folks out there, I know you probably already have a light display - I've seen it... send out invites to your neighbors, have a party, get together."
So, the call is out there. Duluth is the Christmas City of the North and Abfalter wants to be a part of making it bigger. And he’s pretty sure you do too.
For more info, visit the Dunedinville website.