Tinsel Trail Tree Trimming

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Brainstorming ideas
Born On:
08:11, 19 November 2013 (CST)
Last Updated:
11:55, 23 November 2013 (CDT)


Makers Local was sponsored a spruce at the Downtown 47 Tinsel Trail by Kathy and Rich Dinges, who live out of state, but still wanted to support the Tinsel Trail. Let's make them proud! From the Tinsel Trail website:

The Downtown 47 Tinsel Trail is a display of live Christmas trees in Downtown Huntsville during the holidays. More than 200 trees will decorate Big Spring Park for the holiday season, nestled next to the Museum of Art ice skating rink and lining the lake in the west park. Intended to promote community, each tree is sponsored by a local corporation, group, or family, and can be decorated by its sponsor or another organization designated by the sponsor. Last year’s display brought more than 32,000 visitors to the park during the holidays. We expect even greater attendance at Tinsel Trail 2013.

Tree selection and decoration starts Friday, November 22 and runs until the following Wednesday. The designated times are 11am to 4pm each day, but I don't know if we can decorate later than that or not.

There are just a few restrictions on what we can do, and these are listed on the decorations guidelines page.

I hope we can come up with something awesome, and really showcase what we're capable of!


Fri, November 22 - Wednesday November 27, 2013



  • Change the light patterns or brightness based on distance people are from the tree. So that it reacts to their presence and lights up brighter and begins to flash and blink if they get really close.
  • Play some music that gets louder as the people get closer or even talks to them with some recorded happy holidays messages from us at Makers Local 256!
  • Push buttons on ornaments or just on different branches that lets people select which xmas song to play or which light pattern/color to show. (Keep in mind the trees are usually kept out of reach with signs that say 'don't touch'. We'd need permission or something for a tactile interface. -ctag)
  • IR camera to "count" the number of people so that the tree gets more "excited" as more people approach where the lights gets brighter and more colorful and more "blinky" as well as some music that gets louder and perhaps even moves the tree in some way with servos and motors.
  • The tree can react to singing with a microphone that as more people sing louder at the tree it can get brighter and more "blinky" and change colors more often.