The first show of 2013 ran tonight without a hitch. I began setting up the 2nd weekend of November and have been at it every weekend since. Sometime in early November I discovered the Falcon Pi Player over at Falcon Christmas. It is software that runs on a Raspberry Pi for controlling the lights. Is is essentially everything I envisioned the player that I wrote being when it grew up. I ordered a pi and installed the software and was quite impressed. One nagging issue was how I was going to control the Ledtriks panels since ltc.exe is a dos program. Thankfully the author of ltc and designer of the Triks-C sent me the source code and I was able to come up with something in PHP that would talk to the panels. There still some quirks in it to work out, but it does what I need it to for now. It just sits in the background waiting for a certain playlist to play on the pi and when it does it starts displaying the tune to message on the panels.
About 2 weeks ago I decided that we should finally get the firesticks built that we had all the parts for. We stopped into Lowes and got the PVC pipe and some EMT for supporting the sticks. I still had 3 Expresses to build to control the firesticks and 6 firesticks to wrap so I talked my wife into helping wrap them while I built the controllers. She got two firesticks done and got tired of it, so after I finished up the controllers, I finished up the last of the firesticks and got them installed in the yard this afternoon.