Welding students at the Delaware Area Career Center are helping out with Butch Bando’s Fantasy of Lights again this year and are joined by students from the career center’s construction program.
Last year, students created a snowman display with lights. This year, the welding students are creating large tree displays for the light show, and a display for Recreation Unlimited, a local nonprofit “serving individuals with physical and developmental disabilities and health concerns.”
Dante Bando, the operator of Butch Bando’s Fantasy of Lights, was at the career center’s North Campus Friday helping students wire the light displays. Bando said he was glad to partner with the career center again.
“When I was young, this was everything I was interested in,” Bando said. “Building things. I see myself in these kids. It’s enjoyable for me.”
The two seniors leading the welding project, Michael Doellinger and John Lantz, said the project has been a great learning opportunity for them and their classmates.
“We’ve learned a lot about time management,” Lantz said. “We’ve learned as a group to come together. It really brings out character, and you see how they work in the group.”
Lantz said it’s been interesting to see which students need instruction or motivation and which ones just move from one task to another.
The pair said welding students have been working on the project several hours every day, five days a week, for the last five weeks.
“It’s been a very fun experience,” Doellinger said. “It all pays off when it’s lit up.”
In the construction lab, students are creating 10 ticket booths, so the employees at the light show aren’t standing out in the cold.
DACC Construction Instructor Gene Scott said his juniors built the booths to get practice with power tools. He added his seniors will be wiring them, which is technically ahead of their classwork about wiring a house.
Scott said having the seniors wire the booths before their full instruction on wiring is actually a good thing, because it gives them practice and allows them to make mistakes on a small scale, instead of while building a full-size house.
Abby Vaughan, a senior from Westerville Central, said she was enjoying working on the booths and learning about basic wiring.
“We get to see where it all goes,” Vaughan said. “It gets easier as it goes. It’s a lot of fun.”
Collin Brant, a Buckeye Valley construction senior, said students are also getting accustomed to the electrical and wiring codes in Delaware County, which he said is better than just learning the basics.
“It’s been pretty fun so far,” Brant added.
Bando said he hopes the students get experience and enjoyment out of the project, but he also hopes they learn about charity and philanthropy.
“(I hope they learn) about the necessity to be charitable,” Bando said. “In the future, I hope it encourages them to teach philanthropy.”
Bando said the light show has a soft opening on Nov. 13 and opens in full on Nov. 15. More information can be found at http://butchbandosfantasyoflights.com/
Glenn Battishill can be reached at 740-413-0903 or on Twitter @BattishillDG.