The 10th Annual Festival of Trees, presented by the Fraser River Valley Lions Club, will be featuring 22 Christmas trees, four wreaths and two Menorahs decorated by 26 local nonprofit organizations. Attendees who place the highest bid will have their lighted and decorated trees delivered in tree stands by members of the Lions Club on Saturday morning (if winners live west of Kremmling, please discuss delivery arrangements).
Successful wreath and Menorah bidders will take their decorations that evening.
Santa and Mrs. Claus will be at the event from 5-6:30 p.m. to hear the Christmas wish lists of children and to share toys and to be photographed with the children.
According to tradition, there will be a “favorite tree contest,” during which attendees will vote with tickets for the tree they deem the best decorated, winning that organization an additional stipend.
An added feature this year is a raffle for an original oil painting by local artist Marie Johannes. Titled “A Tree for All,” a pine tree with character stands in a snow field in Grand County with the Indian Peaks in the background. On Sunday, Dec. 1, at 3 p.m. at the Fraser History Museum, the painting will be on view and Marie will present a talk about creating a painting. Of course the painting will be on view and will be raffled at the event.
Another tradition returns as wood carvings by Bill Browne will be available for purchase throughout the evening or until sold out.
Always a popular table, desserts provided by local restaurateurs will be presented in a silent auction during the evening — prevailing bidders will take their desserts home upon departure from the event, perhaps a respite from holiday bakings. Festival guests are invited to enjoy hors d’oeuvres prepared by Lions Club members, and drinks will again be served at the bar.
This holiday tradition began in 2004 in a retail space in Cooper Creek, featuring 10 trees. The winning tree that first year was decorated by the Middle Park High School After Prom Committee for a high bid of $600. Subsequently the festival moved to larger space at Beaver Creek for several years before progressing to the Recreation Center.
Participating nonprofit organizations this year include Advocates for a Violence-Free Community; NWRM Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA); Eternal Hills Christian Preschool; Fraser Community Garden; Fraser Creative Learning Center; Fraser Valley Recreation Foundation; Girl Scouts; Grand Beginnings; Grand County Characters (by Fraser Red Hat Chapter of Women with Altitude); Grand County Council on Aging; Grand County Jewish Community; Grand County Rural Health Network; Grand Futures; Grand Huts; Grand Kids; Headwaters Trail Alliance; Heart of the Mountains Hospice; Horizons; Infinite West; Middle Park 4-H Club; Middle Park Fair & Rodeo Royalty Program; Moffat Road Railroad Museum & Interpretative Center/Grand Co. Model Railroad Club; Mountain Family Center (by Grand County Board of Realtors); National Sports Center for the Disabled; P.E.O. Chapter IE; Pet Pals; and Trout Unlimited.
Please contact local Lions Club members for raffle tickets or additional information about this lovely Grand County Christmas tradition, or log on to the website atwww.fraservalleylions.org.