By CHERIL VERNON
For the second year, the Dogwood Garden Club will present its Festival of Trees event — lighting up the Palestine Mall with 25 Christmas trees representing local non-profit organizations.
“This is an extremely unique event where individuals or groups of individuals will be decorating their own Christmas tree that depicts the organization’s purpose,” Dogwood Garden Club festival organizer Linda Brown said. “The Dogwood Garden Club of Palestine has been beautifying Palestine and Anderson County for the past 73 years in various ways. The members continue to decorate Christmas trees at the Anderson County Courthouse and the Anderson County Annex for the holiday season. It only seems appropriate for our fundraiser to be along those same lines.”
The public will vote for the top three Christmas trees. Cash prizes will be awarded to the organizations, including $750 for first place, $500 for second place and $250 for third place. Ben E. Keith Beers has underwritten the cost of the cash prizes.
There is no cost to participate, however, each organization will be responsible for their tree, live or artificial, 10’ maximum height. In addition they will be required to have on hand all the necessary supplies (scissors, wire, wire cutters, step ladders, extension cords) needed to decorate their tree. There is a limit to the first 25 organizations that have completed the application forms along with a current copy of their non-profit status, mailed in by the deadline on Oct. 30.
A bazaar will be held consisting of homemade baked goods, desserts and jellies along with arts, crafts and other creative items that will be available for sale. The money raised will help the club with their projects on local, district, state and national levels.
Some of the projects the Dogwood Garden Club participates in on a local level include: maintaining the Dogwood Mini Park (29th year), the McReynolds Plaza Triangle (sixth year), the Blue Star Highway Memorial Marker (32nd year); and Adopt a Street Project (litter control, ninth year) where they continue to teacher Hope Jr. Gardeners (Westwood Elementary School sixth-grade class) the importance of keeping streets free of litter. The children help pick up litter with the garden club several times a year.
If your organization is interested in getting the organization’s name in the public or if your organization is interested participating in this fundraiser and have not received an invitation and/or need further information, contact Brown at 903-478-3264 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.