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The holidays are all about family traditions, long-held or brand new. Whether it’s opening a single gift on Christmas Eve, attending midnight church services or caroling with the neighbors, traditions are what bring such joy and spirit to the season. And, there is something irresistible about adding magic touches to our traditions: Santa, the Elf on the Shelf … and The Magic Light Wand!

Gay's granddaughter Sophia, 4, lights the tree with a wave of the Magic Light Wand!

Sophia, the 4-year-old granddaughter of the Magic Light Wand creator Gay Hammond, lights the tree with a wave of the wand!

A few years ago, Gay Hammond started a new family tradition: Having her grandchildren light the Christmas tree with a flip of the wrist. It all started after her husband, Romulus “Rommy” Morgan Hammond III, performed as the “Fairy Godmother of Christmas Present” in Fat Cat Follies, a fundraising event for Playhouse on the Square in Memphis, TN. During the show, someone handed him a magic wand. When Gay later found it lying around the house, she began asking her grandkids if they wanted to turn on the Christmas tree lights with this “magic wand.” As the children waved the wand, she surreptitiously clicked the remote that controlled the lights, and they all believed they were lighting the tree!

When her son Josh found out what she had been doing, he was ready to go straight to a patent attorney. His entrepreneurial brain kicked into high gear as he envisioned his mom’s “Magic Light Wand” in stores across the country. With as much joy as this “Magic Light Wand” was adding to his own family, he knew it was a tradition that others needed to add a little more wonder to the season. For two years, Josh did market research and paid particular attention to the types of holiday products different shops were carrying. Then, with his mom’s permission and help from friend and now-business partner Billy Cochran, Josh had a prototype created.

Josh launched Magic Light Wand Company in December 2012 as the newest family business and received his first shipment in time for the 2013 holiday season. The wand-shaped remote works with a wireless A/C wall receiver. (Shhh, don’t tell!) Gay and Josh first featured the product at local holiday shows such as the Junior League of Memphis Merry Marketplace, and it is now sold in a several regional chains as well as about 1,800 boutiques throughout the South.

The Magic Light Wand is not only magical, it's also musical! Waving the wand produces a whimsical sound effect.

The musical Magic Light Wand comes in a choice of three holiday colors: Red, green and gold.

A wave of the Magic Light Wand is not only magical, it’s also musical! The waving motion produces whimsical sound effects that delight children and adults alike.

Holidays for the Hammond family traditionally involve working. While many people are off on Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve, these are two of the busiest days for the Hammond’s family business — Buster’s Liquors & Wines in Memphis. For many years, Gay hosted an open house for friends and relatives on Christmas day, one of the few times that her entire family was sure to be free.

Gay Hammond is the creative force behind Magic Light Wand.

Gay Hammond invented the Magic Light Wand, which started as her own little secret as a magical moment for her grandchildren during the Christmas holidays.

“Even though the invitation said the event was from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m., the door didn’t usually close until late in the evening,” Gay says. While the open house is no longer an annual event, through Gay’s invention of the Magic Light Wand, this busy family still gets time to embrace the magic of Christmas.

Entering its fourth Christmas season, the company has already quadrupled its production, and Josh says he hopes to quadruple again in 2017. But with their success, Gay and Josh don’t want sales to overshadow an important part of their company’s mission — to give back to organizations that benefit children.

“Christmas is a magical time, and putting the lighting of the tree back into the hands of children is what the wand is all about,” Josh says.

So it makes sense why they have chosen to give back to children who could certainly use some magic. Each year, Magic Light Wand Company grants a wish through Make-A-Wish® Mid-South. The company also provides Santa visits and wand giveaways for the patients at Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital and St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Nearly in sync with the light of the wand, the kids’ faces shine when they hear the enchanting sound it makes as they wave it around.

Josh Hammond and his mom, Gay, took her magic trick and turned it into a holiday tradition for thousands of families.

Josh Hammond and his mom, Gay, took her magic trick and turned it into a holiday tradition for thousands of families.

For 2017, the company is looking to expand its product line into other seasons. If the hospitals are lucky, they might also get a visit from Cupid with his quiver of magic arrows, or the Easter Bunny with her basket of magic carrots. (These are not necessarily future Magic Light Wand products. We’re just having fun imagining!) The possibilities are enough to spark the inner-child in all of us!


Gay's grandchildren, Sophia, 4, and Josh Jr., 2, are ready for a magical holiday!

Gay’s grandchildren, Sophia, 4, and Josh Jr., 2, are ready for a magical holiday!

Until then, enjoy the original Magic Light Wand. Because we all know unplugging holiday lights at the outlet is no fun, not to mention having to reach behind the tree. With the wave of the Magic Light Wand, you can spark a new holiday tradition in your home, embrace the magic of the holiday season — and light your tree with ease and grandeur. And after taking your tree down, use it as a nightlight or connect it to your bedside lamp. Magic happens all year long!

StyleBlueprint readers: Buy three or more Magic Light Wands ($25 each), and receive free shipping. Click here to order.

This article is sponsored by Magic Light Wand.

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