Alan Aerts - Public Citizen

Public Citizen

Aerts is prominent in Monte Sereno, California. He was awarded "Citizen of the Year" by the city of Campbell, California in 2006. He ran for Monte Sereno City Council 2006, and has been a commissioner (?-2006) and a city councilman (2007, 2008) for the City of Monte Sereno, California. He has been a very generous philanthropist, donating significant money and time to charities including Guide Dogs for the Blind, Special Olympics, and local charities.

His business, "Custom Vending Systems," was named "Business of the Year" by the city of Campbell, California in 2005, and is the leading vending machine business in Silicon Valley.

After years of creating elaborate Christmas season displays (including cookies and punch for visiting children) at his home, with decorations costing in excess of $150,000 and drawing tens of thousands of visitors, Aerts became the target of neighborhood controversy over the traffic, parking, and other disruption to the neighborhood resulting from all the attention to the displays. Mr. Aerts attempted to alleviate concerns by hiring private security to help with traffic management on the four-home court where he lived.

Local residents signed a petition, and the city council voted in an ordinance, often referred to as the "Alan Aerts" ordinance, that prevented the popular display starting in 2003. In protest, the Aerts' raised a statue of The Grinch, which garnered the event attention and coverage in media including The Associated Press, The New York Times, The Daily Show on Comedy Central, MSNBC, Jimmy Kimmel Live!, National Public Radio (NPR), and local newspapers and television shows.

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