Thursday, November 24, 2016
The community has a chance to help area seniors in need and have some holiday fun at the same time at the second annual Festival of Trees New Braunfels. The event, held Nov. 29-30 and Dec. 1-2 in the Milltown Historic District, includes live music, baked goods and visits from Santa Claus — and, more importantly, decorated Christmas trees that can be bid on to raise funds. Proceeds will go to the Comal County Senior Citizens Center and the Central Texas Advocate for Seniors. The event is free and open to the public.
“The atmosphere is warm and special because we all are giving to help seniors in need,” said Sally Nicholls with New Haven Assisted Living, who has spearheaded the Festival of Trees celebrations. “This community service event benefits everyone. You feel the holiday feeling when you step inside the door. If you purchase a tree, for your personal enjoyment or to donate to someone else, you know that purchase is not just benefiting you, it benefits seniors in need, and that is a satisfying feeling.”
More than 30 organizations, churches, businesses, clubs and individuals are donating fully decorated Christmas trees to be auctioned off during the silent auction.
“It will be fun,” said Ken Lowery, executive director of the Comal County Senior Citizens Center. “There are some really neat trees coming in.”
Lowery said the trees range in size from tabletop to full-sized, and each has a different theme. The highest bidders on the trees can do with them what they like — take them home, give them to a relative or donate them to a church or organization.
Avia Dowden, membership and activities director at the senior center, said four groups from the center are making trees for the festival. That way, the center is a contributor as well as a beneficiary.
“The funds will come to the center to support our wellness program, including Meals on Wheels,” Lowery said.
Nicholls said more than 40 entertainers are volunteering their time to provide entertainment during the festival, and Santa Claus will be there every afternoon from 4-7 to visit with children.
“We are so appreciative of the organizations and individuals who have donated Christmas trees for someone else to enjoy,” Nicholls said. “As a bonus, trees are delivered free. The festival is a win-win for everyone.”
Festival of Trees New Braunfels will be held from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Nov. 29-Dec. 1 and 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Dec. 2 at The Grand in Milltown, 490 Porter St., behind the Marketplace Shopping Center. The event is sponsored by New Haven Assisted Living and Memory Care, Kyle Law Firm, Partners in Primary Care, Visiting Angels, Home Instead Senior Care, Legend Oaks, The House Hunter, Central Texas Advocate for Seniors and Resolute Health Hospital. Tree delivery to a home, church or business within 15 miles is free. For more information, call Regina at (512) 667-0077 or Sally at (208) 431-4960, or visit https://www.facebook.com/festivaloftrees1/