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Take part in the annual Christmas Lights Competition

By Larry Malan

Like it or not, Christmas is just a matter of weeks away and residents of property in Benowa and other parts of the Gold Coast are being asked to get into the festive spirit.

Gold Coast mayor Tom Tate has officially launched the annual Christmas Lights Competition, which is now in its 22nd year.

Properties throughout the region are kitted out with lights and other festive decorations before members of the local community decide which one is their winner.

Unlike in previous years, people will be able to cast their votes using SMS, which will automatically put them in the running to win a $500 Coles gift card.

"The new voting method gives people the opportunity to say thanks to the dozens of residents who take time to create a bit of Christmas magic right across the Gold Coast," said Mr Tate.

Previous years have seen a panel of judges making the final decision, but the 2014 event will be much more interactive and involve members of the public.

Votes can be cast between December 1 and 17 and people are asked to send in the code that relates to their favourite display, along with their name, address, post code and state.

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