By Andria Borba

CONCORD (KPIX 5) — A man who has brightened a Concord neighborhood with his holiday lights display got a special tribute from neighbors Monday.

Bruce Mertz, also known as “Mr. Christmas” in his Concord neighborhood is pulling the plug on his yearly display after stringing miles of lights for 36-years.

Bruce and his Olive Drive display have their own documentary, but it’s been a tough year for him after back surgery, a heart attack, and a pace maker.

“It’s what kept me alive.  It’s what kept me going for a long time,” Mertz said of his lights display.

When Bruce said he was handing in his elf hat, neighbors wanted to throw him a Christmas party worthy of the show in his front yard.

“The idea of him unplugging the lights one last time and not having anybody here to show him how much those 36-years have meant was a sad one,” party organizer Jackie Kouhi said.

So, Concord came out to bask in the glow of the lights with Bruce one last time.

“Golly, it was amazing.  I didn’t think there would ever be that much response,” Mertz said of the party held for him.

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