Suzy and Brent Fountaine’s holiday village was first built in 2003 with only six houses. Now the couple has more than five dozen, all from different sets and manufacturers. Photo by Ray Still

Suzy and Brent Fountaine’s holiday village was first built in 2003 with only six houses. Now the couple has more than five dozen, all from different sets and manufacturers. Photo by Ray Still

Bonney Lake couple to keep holiday spirit alive year-round

With their kids all moved out of the house, Suzy and Brent Fountaine thought they’d use some of the extra room to really get back into the holiday spirit. It took an entire month to unpack everything, wire the houses and lights together and build a base, but the Fountaine’s expansive Christmas village is back and bigger than ever.

Christmas 2017 may be in the past, but the holiday spirit continues around the Plateau, and Suzy and Brent Fountaine have decided to keep the holiday spirit alive and well in their home year round in the form of an expansive Christmas village display.

The 8 foot by 12 foot miniature village started out a small set of six houses the couple bought in 2003 when they were married, “and that started this whole fiasco,” Suzy said.

The village kept growing year after year as friends gifted more houses, shops, people and more to the couple, or when they’d find a particularly cute model at Goodwill or Wal-Mart.

They stopped putting out the village in 2013, but now the couple plans to build it up even more in the future.

Now, the Fountaines have more than 400 trees dotting the village landscape and more than five dozen houses and shops. They also have a working Polar Express train that runs through the village and a miniature ski lift they recently ordered from Germany.

The entire village lights up, from the popcorn and eggnog factories to the reindeer veterinary office and small lighthouses.

The holiday village is lively with many moving parts, including a carousel, ski lift, ferris wheel, popcorn factory, the Polar Express train and even several people around the village. Photo by Ray Still

The holiday village is lively with many moving parts, including a carousel, ski lift, ferris wheel, popcorn factory, the Polar Express train and even several people around the village. Photo by Ray Still

“It uses more power than the whole house does,” Brent, the village’s electrician, said.

The couple have even tried to incorporate parts of the Plateau in their village, though Suzy said she wants to focus even more on that in the future.

For example, there’s a Café Elite coffee shop in the village, with a sign based on the real life coffee shop in Buckley (Suzy often works for them as a graphic designer), and the ski lift uses the same colors that are used on Crystal Mountain.

Not everything was gifted or bought — Suzy sculpted much of the environment for her village from foam and painted it herself, like the large tunnel the Polar Express goes through. Other parts of the village, like some stairs and icicles, were made with a 3D printer.

“3D printing is cool, but it takes forever,” Suzy said. “I have to wait seven hours to get my staircase, and even two to get a decent icicle.”

After this year, the village will be moving out of their living room and into one of the now unused rooms upstairs as a permanent display, “so I can work on the little details year round,” Suzy said.

Of course, words can only do the village so much justice, but luckily for Plateau residents, Suzy and Brent want to share their holiday spirit with their community.

They said they are available all day on Sundays, so anyone who wants to visit the village and learn more about it can contact Suzy via Facebook or email her at suzyfountaine@live.com.

The only thing the Fountaines ask in return is a donation of food for the Bonney Lake Food Bank, which can be dropped off at their home.

Some of the houses for the village are sentimental, like ones given to the Fountaines by friends and family who have died. Others represent parts of the Plateau, and still more — like the reindeer veterinarian office — are just plain cute and funny. Photo by Ray Still

Some of the houses for the village are sentimental, like ones given to the Fountaines by friends and family who have died. Others represent parts of the Plateau, and still more — like the reindeer veterinarian office — are just plain cute and funny. Photo by Ray Still

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