Chris Birkett soon will be able to make as much noise as he wants. The Scottsdale man convicted in June of disturbing the peace with an elaborate holiday display at his Scottsdale home in 2004 now is setting up his locally famous Christmas display at Schnepf Farms, a family-owned farm in Queen Creek.
"Now he’s got no restrictions," said Denise Wylie, Birkett’s mother. Birkett declined to comment.
Birkett put on holiday displays at his home on East Montebello Avenue in south Scottsdale for years before neighbor Alicia Majercin complained to Scottsdale police about blaring music and noisy crowds. Judge B. Monte Morgan of the Scottsdale City Court ruled in June that Birkett’s Halloween display disturbed the peace and banned him from making an unreasonable amount of noise in the future.
That won’t be a problem at Schnepf Farms, said co-owner Carrie Schnepf.
"There’s no sound restrictions because we’re in the middle of 300 acres," Schnepf said. She added that Birkett’s display will be "bigger and better" than it ever was.
Birkett’s Web site boasts that his Christmas display in Scottsdale contained 150,000 lights and seven computerized light shows set to music and snowfall.
Dubbed the Winter Wonderland Christmas Light Drive -Thru, the Schnepf Farms display will start with guests either taking a hayride or driving in their cars through a forest of Christmas lights that will lead to a small farmhouse.
The farmhouse will be elaborately decorated, and Christmas lights will blink to holiday music.
The show will run from 6 to 10 p.m. Nov. 30 to Dec. 31 daily except Tuesdays. The cost is $6 per person for a hayride or $10 per car.
Schnepf said she and Birkett will split profits from visitors, who in the past have averaged about 400 a day.
Wylie said the joke is on those who complained about her son’s displays and the judge who said they disturbed the peace.
"I’m going to thank the city because they just made him a millionaire," she said. "He used to do the display for free, and now he gets to make money."