The Bay Area can already claim a couple of wins from previous seasons of ABC's suburban Christmas light fever-dream of a competition show The Great Christmas Light Fight, and now we have another contender up in Suisun City.
Can I just take a moment to point out the unnecessary, aggro, toxic nature of the now commonplace naming convention of reality competition shows where it's always got to be a fucking "war" or a "showdown" or a "fight" — e.g. Holiday Wars, Cake Wars, Cupcake Wars, Holiday Gingerbread Showdown, and The Great Christmas Light Fight. Can't we all just get along and have a nice, festive, war-free season?
Anyway, Season 10 of The Great Christmas Light Fight just premiered last week, and Monday's Episode 4 — now available on Hulu, two episodes have been airing each night — featured the home of married couple Aaron Sencil and Vincent Tanciongco on Shoveller Drive in Suisun City.
Sencil tells the Vacaville Reporter that it had always been a"crazy dream" to compete on the show, but even though they were called up by ABC in 2019 after first decorating their family's home around 2018, they turned down the opportunity because they didn't feel like they had honed their craft yet.
"We were only a year or two old," Sencil tells the Reporter. "We just didn’t feel we were good enough to be on the show."
But with nieces and nephews getting older and a dad's Parkinson's diagnosis, they decided to pull the trigger and go for it when ABC called again in 2021. They decorated their "Gingy House" for the cameras, and the crew was all there to shoot in the fall of 2021, right after Thanksgiving — the episodes of those show stay in the can for a year to allow for production time.
And while Sencil and Tanciongco's Gingy House is one of the smaller homes featured on the show, Sencil tells the Reporter they were likely chosen because of their unique emphasis on using recycled and upcycled materials like campaign signs and pool noodles, rather than all store-bought plastic, etc. — and for the producers, making sure to have a same-sex couple or two in a season doesn't hurt for diversity and inclusion.
"We don’t really buy anything that’s pre-made," Sencil tells the Reporter. "We make everything ourselves. We don’t want to look like a Home Depot ad. We want to make sure that it’s to our liking and to make just exactly how we want it."
The Gingy House joins a couple of previous homes in the Bay Area that have appeared on the Great Christmas Light Fight, including Santa Rosa’s Berndt family, which won the $50,000 prize on one of last year's episodes; and the Rombeiros of Novato, who won in 2019.
You can visit this year's Gingy House, which is probably even better than last year's, at 340 Shoveller Drive, Suisun City, between 6 and 10 p.m., daily through January 1. (The music turns off at 9 p.m.) The front-door is available for photo taking between 8 and 9 p.m., and the "Chocolate Door" is available for photos between 6 and 8 p.m., both by reservation. Reservations are not needed to view the house from the street.
Here's some behind-the-scenes footage below, and the trailer for this year's Great Christmas Light Fight, in which there are a few shots of the Gingy House.
Top image via ABC/Great Christmas Light Fight