Courtyard Lighting

This is a wonderful topic for discussion because courtyard lighting is not limited to the type of space you are in.  Most people understand this setting to be more of an isolated area or a transitional space that people traverse through.

A courtyard is typically defined as an un-roofed, outdoor space that is partially or completely surrounded by walls or buildings.  It has a feeling of being both enclosed and open at the same time.

Many times one will find these spaces designed into the entry of a home, which allows additional value and comfort to the entry approach.  The purpose of this article is to explore how one might consider lighting these spaces to enhance this experience.

Key Points to Illuminating a Courtyard

Let’s first address the ‘purpose’ of this space.  Courtyards can be a pass-through or transitional space or it can be a special gathering place.  They are designed to provide two things:  1) interest or beauty, and 2) comfort.

courtyard wall 1This purpose is important because it sets the tone for your guests as they experience your home life.  Interest and beauty provide for a joyful experience.  Comfort provides relaxation and a sense of calm, which can be another form of joy.  Who doesn’t wish to feel this way when visiting someone?

How can you ensure that these spaces are both effective and functional?  One must consider the following points:

  • Safety–to provide proper levels of illumination
  • Interest–to capture attention
  • Warmth–to provide coziness and to make it inviting
  • Mood–to set the tone that affects one’s emotions

Note:  It is this last point that makes the greatest impact on your guest–it will provide them with a memorable experience.  You must ask yourself, “What is it that I want to convey to my guest(s)?”  This is where your personality can shine through.


“The goal of the courtyard is to provide a memorable experience.”

courtyard 1The courtyard must stimulate the senses, as this is the key to making the experience memorable.  “Sight”—visually appealing and effectively illuminated, “Sound”—calming sounds like water, birds, or wind chimes, “Smell”—refreshing floral scents or ones that relax are best, and even “Touch”—soft, clean and non-threatening.  Each of these elements combined can intensify this experience.

Lastly, the courtyard is a highly specialized space.  It requires a great deal of understanding of each of these elements.  NiteLiters, Inc. has the experience and skill set to provide for these unique settings–we are confident in finding the best solution for you.

Testimonial Story

We receive quite a few personalized letters from many of our customers.  Each one has expressed something about our lighting systems and how their lives have changed for the better.  The following note shares one of these moments:

“Dear Gary and the NiteLiters team,

I am so amazed at how beautiful you have lit up our front entry courtyard.  We have always loved this part of our home, but it wasn’t until you had brought it all alive at night that we received several compliments.

My best friend from high school recently came to visit.  Her husband and she both commented that the time we shared together sitting in this garden was so wonderful—they will never forget it.  They commented on how the water spilling from our fountain cast a mesmerizing shadow play or dancing pattern against the back wall.  And, to see the soft, warm lights glowing through the bushes made them feel so relaxed.

We cannot thank you enough for what you have done for us.


            Sherry, Evansville, IN

Details & Tips

Unfortunately, courtyards and homes vary greatly and most are individualized by the homeowner.  Many take on a personality of their own and here in lies the design challenge.  Our best advice is to ensure that you have hired someone with true experience designing such settings.

Proven experience and this kind of understanding gives NiteLiters, Inc. the competitive edge over our competition.  Our promise to YOU–to provide the finest, most effective, mood-enhancing solution possible.

“NiteLiters, Inc. understands the importance of utilizing light that will be remembered.”

Tip #1:  Provide a gentle flow of illumination throughout the space.  Avoid a strong, single application of light surrounded by darkness—this is way too much contrast and it will not look pleasing.

Note:  Remember, the goal to these areas is to make them “inviting” and warm.  Effectively, lighting can do this because of its nature and color.  It is best to apply warmer color temperatures of light typically around 2700 Kelvin, but it can range from very warm (2200) to a warmer white (3000) on this temperature scale.

Loduca courtyard table compTip #2:  Apply indirect lighting as much as possible and avoid glare.  Using walls or surfaces to reflect light is a very pleasing approach to illuminating these types of spaces.

Tip #3:  Provide for only one focal point in this space—this will require the brightness level of lighting, as compared to any other lighting application.  By doing so, you will provide both simplicity to the scene and sense of calm.  Additionally, it will limit competition in the space, too.

Loduca rose shadows comprTip #4:  Create interest by utilizing shadows and light play.  Walls are an excellent backdrop for this illumination.  These patterns or play of light can create movement whether it’s from the wind or water, and it can provide added value–stimulating the senses.


Our company is and has always been built on “service”—providing proven lighting solutions that will allow you to live without worry.  It is very important to us that we assure you of this commitment by NiteLiters, Inc.

Once you acquire our services you become part of our “family.”  We will always be there for you–for the long haul.  This is our promise to you.  NiteLiters, Inc. is a proven leader.  We lead by example, which means we ‘talk-the-talk and walk-the-walk.’  We build trustworthy relationships that promote peace-of-mind.

We are passionate about “service” because we believe in it.  It’s not just a written word.  We can prove this through almost two decades of joyful referrals.  Our secret to this is simple:

Eliminate Problems

Eliminate Fears

Eliminate Concerns


Call NiteLiters, Inc. Now!

There is no better time to enhance your living environment—we would love the opportunity to meet with you and to explore ideas.  One of our team specialists will eagerly set a date and time that best applies to your needs—please contact us at:

NiteLiters, Inc.

 (270) 685-7070     Kentucky

(615) 674-9950        Tennessee

(812) 431-7250     Indiana

We serve most any outdoor lighting need within a 200-mile radius of Owensboro, KY, for both residential and commercial properties. This includes the beautiful state of Kentucky, southern Illinois and Indiana, and northern Tennessee.  We are a nationally recognized, award-winning company that is licensed, insured, and certified.

BBQ Lighting

Who doesn’t love the smell and flavors provided by a BBQ?  This is the time of the year when more and more people spend a beautiful afternoon or evening outside.  These are the times when family and friends relax to the kind of meal that everyone remembers.

Many view BBQing as a family tradition…it’s a positive experience or at least, it should be.  One can vividly recall the memory of smell and taste.  Maybe it was the tantalizing smell of hickory or mesquite lingering from the smoked ribs.  Or, maybe it’s that funny or scary moment when dad had a roaring fire that was burning the chicken!  Either way, these moments make for wonderful family memories.


Regardless, there is something about the BBQ that lures people to gather around it.  For men, it’s the element of “fire” and how it’s something instinctual…..making them ‘hunter-providers’.  It must be that “caveman” experience.

And for women, it’s all about the warmth of food and being with family.  The BBQ seems to promote love in many ways.  So, with that said, let’s get to cooking!

Testimonial Story

It was several years ago when one of our customers had contacted us specifically about what we could do to help her with some of the problems they were having, as it was associated with their BBQing area.  NiteLiters, Inc. was enthusiastic to find a creative solution with this opportunity.  Here is the story:


“Gary, I wanted to take a moment to pass along how grateful we are about the work that NiteLiters did for me.  My husband (John) was thrilled.  We used it shortly after it was installed.

As you may recall, John was having such difficulty seeing what he was cooking.  We mostly use the BBQ after dark and this was very frustrating to him.  Since your team had installed the lighting at our patio and specifically on the BBQ it has made a world of difference.  No longer do I see the stress on his face as he cooks—this is such a wonderful gift—thank you!!

John’s confidence in cooking is back!  He used to either under-cook or over-cook the meats without consistency, which was very upsetting to him. It’s amazing that having the proper lighting can make such a difference.  If not for you taking the time to explain why and where to put lights, we would still be dealing with these frustrations.  If you recall, we used to use the back porch light to try to light up the grill.  You showed us how the BBQ lid would block the light causing shadows to be cast where we were cooking—it was terrible.

We are thrilled with the work you did.  Thank you so much.”

            John & Mary Lou, Owensboro, KY

Key Points in BBQ Lighting

In order to master the BBQ one must ensure the following:  1) Temperature control, 2) Cook time, 3) Food preparation, 4) Equipment & tools, and 5) Proper lighting.  Our focus in this article will be on the lighting component.

???????????????????????????????????????BBQing is a “task-oriented” activity and it needs direct and properly aimed light.  If the cook cannot effectively see what is being prepared/cooked, then this is a problem.  Typically, this activity occurs towards the evening hours (for dinner), and many times it’s in the dark.  If this is the case, then why hinder yourself with inadequate lighting?  It serves no good to waste time, energy and money in performing this task, if you cannot have a good chance to be successful.  Therefore, your goals are:

  • To work efficiently (proper tools & equipment & lighting)
  • To gain a return on your investment (food & time)
  • ease of use in this task (comfort)

The bottom line is this, and it applies to this setting:

“Keep doing what you’re doing and you’ll keep getting what you’re getting!”

NiteLiters, Inc. is confident about our ability to solve problems and in finding solutions.  In this case, it’s finding how best to apply light to the task at hand—the BBQ station.  There are four (4) ways to effectively illuminate the grilling area or BBQ station:

  1. A fixed, overhead light fixture
  2. A fixed, internal, built-in light source within the BBQ lid/cover
  3. A fixed, surface-mount/counter top, flexible arm light fixture
  4. A non-fixed, moveable, clip-on style light fixture

Details & Tips

Let’s take a moment to look at the above testimonial.  It’s an example of a common problem, as it applies to inadequate lighting.  A fact commonly unknown is that most BBQ stations have ineffective and poor lighting.  Most home builders and electricians only plan for a single light source outside of the back door of the home—that’s usually all that the building code requires.  So, unless you are building a custom home and specifically plan for this type of task lighting, then you are out of luck.  You’re only left with a glary light source on the back wall—that’s it!

“NiteLiters, Inc. has the expertise and professional experience to properly locate light fixtures to address task-oriented activities.”

Tip #1:  The best way to apply light to the BBQ station is from above and to the side of the cook/operator.

Note:  One must always remember the many grills/BBQ’s have attached lids that open 90 degrees off of the horizontal plane, which means this will most likely block any light source to this backside of the grill.  The cook will always be in a “shadowed” condition in this scenario.

Tip #2:  A directed light source positioned further from the BBQ unit will provide a better spread of light for the majority of the cooking station.  This is the benefit of utilizing a light fixture mounted up in a patio overhead structure or a tree.  Most of the surface mount or lid mounted lighting units only apply enough light to a small limited area and the rest of the cooking or preparation areas are left in the dark.


It is very important to us to assure you of our company’s commitment–to provide excellence in products and services, to be dependable, and to put your needs first.  Our true measure to success is provided by making you (our customer) happy.

The only way we can ensure this is by solving or eliminating your problems, concerns and fears.  It’s just that simple.  Once you acquire our services, then you become part of our “family”.  We will always be there for you and for the long haul.  This is our promise to every customer.

We have been in business for almost two decades and there is a reason for this—we care.  Our services and abilities are unparalleled.  We lead by example….which means we talk the talk and walk the walk.  We build trustworthy relationships that promote peace of mind.


Call NiteLiters, Inc. now!

There is no better time to enhance your living environment—we would love the opportunity to meet with you and to explore ideas.  One of our team specialists will eagerly set a date and time that best applies to your needs—please contact us at:

NiteLiters, Inc.

(270) 685-7070        Kentucky

(615) 674-9950          Tennessee

(812) 431-7250      Indiana

We serve most any outdoor lighting need within a 200-mile radius of Owensboro, KY, for both residential and commercial properties. This includes the beautiful state of Kentucky, southern Illinois and Indiana, and northern Tennessee.  We are a nationally recognized, award-winning company that is licensed, insured, and certified.


Spring is about ready to turn to summer and it’s that time of year when everything is fresh and alive.  Not only is this a beautiful time of year, but it’s an opportunity for growth.  What a perfect time to mimic this very wonderful observation.

NiteLiters, Inc. has decided to act accordingly—to present two new developments that will provide great benefits to our community.  We are utilizing this blog as a means both to help our existing customers and all potential new customers.  Not only are we continuing to meet the needs of our surrounding communities, but we are now branching out into other cities and states.

We have received so many wonderful comments and testimonials from those of you who have trusted in our abilities that we are eager to provide our services to many others.  It is our hope that you will help us in this endeavor, as you are considered a valued customer who is a life-time friend.

How can you help?

By sharing our interest stories with other friends and family.



Additionally, we would like to provide an easier means for you to follow us or to receive this information—through signing up to receive this blog information or company news.  As you know, we exist to serve you—it’s a part of our mission.  We would encourage you to feel free to contact us anytime, whether it is to say hello or to ask a question.  NiteLiters, Inc. is a family-owned business and with that, we treat each of our customers as “family.”

It is very important to us that you understand the following:

  • We are committed to excellence—the products we use, the services we provide, and how we manage them
  • We care about you and your lighting system—the value of our services are in direct relationship to these elements
  • We are passionate to fulfill your desires—our team approach to find solutions is what we are all about

Gary & Sally Mitchell close comp

Owner’s Welcome Note

How blessed am I to have this opportunity to personally invite you to follow NiteLiters, Inc., and to have refreshing means to learn more about landscape lighting.  My name is Gary Mitchell and I began this venture in the 1990’s, as an excited entrepreneur to build a strong business in something I love—landscape lighting.

I have developed this business into a thriving means to serve those searching for an enhanced life-style experience, for my family, and for the communities that surround us.  Much of my family is part of this business, so it has a deeper meaning and value to me.

Currently, I am allowing my children to take over much of the operations as part of my succession plan.  I still work the business day-to-day, but I really enjoy acting more as a consultant in this progression.  It is very fulfilling to me in watching this transition, as it’s another step of faith to see this vision continue into the next generation.

Together, we share in the delights that we can provide.  I have the wonderful support of my lovely wife, Sally—without her love and support we all would not be where we are today.  NiteLiters, Inc. is built on character, principles, and uncompromising standards.  We have taken many steps to ensure that each member of our team values these same attributes.

First and foremost, we honor God with all that we do.  Without His wisdom and guidance, we would not have obtained the position and opportunities we have.  We believe each customer is a blessing to us and we respect that.  I believe this is why we build relationships to last.

Thank you for taking the time to read this blog and I hope that you might continue to follow us on this journey.  God bless.



Gary Mitchell

Owner/CEO of NiteLiters, Inc.