The Festival of Trees in Vero Beach
To get into the holiday spirit, I volunteered at the annual Festival of Trees, in Vero Beach, Florida. This huge collection of holiday fun is a must do for shopping, browsing beautifully decorated trees, seeing live performances, and ensuring a visit from Santa. I had the most wonderful experience! It was held at the Riverside Children’s Theatre in Vero Beach in order to benefit their educational programs. This year’s theme was Storybook Forest. Many sponsors and countless volunteer hours go into the making of this three day production.
An Annual Vero Beach Holiday Event
The Festival of Trees was held at the theater and the entire place becomes dedicated to all things Christmas. There was a silent auction, with a fun item being an NCIS Los Angeles VIP tour with Chris O’Donnell. A huge selection of themed tall Christmas trees were auctioned to the highest bidder at the end of the show on Sunday. Bidders also had the option of paying via the “instant buyer” option. Specialty trees included: Owl Babies, Ice Queen, The Little Drummer Boy, Twelve Days of Christmas, Nutcracker, and Little Golden Books (which seemed to be the patrons favorite). Table top tree themes were: Nemo’s Reef, Enchanted, Fairies of the Forest, Gingerbread Baby, Frozen, and The Cat in the Hat.
If you came to the event looking to do some holiday shopping, you probably hit the jackpot. Several local stores had exhibit booths set up, as well as a few from further away such as West Palm Beach and Delray Beach. Children’s reversible dresses, wine cork art and trinkets, hand-painted gifts, unique jewelry, Grosgrain ribbon bags & belts, as well as seasonal crafts, and ornaments were some of the gift selections. There was also a Christmas Shoppe with gifts, unique palm tree flower arrangements, hand-blown glass ornaments, and delicious cheese spreads. Credit cards were welcome! Raffle tickets were sold throughout the event for a $2,000 grand prize.
Having A Fun Filled Day
All day long, the festival was bustling with activities. The entertainment schedule included a visit from Santa, story telling of “Polar Express”, “A Christmas Carol”, and “How the Grinch Stole Christmas”, student, choral, and hand bell choir performance, and holiday music. Do not miss the Candy Cane Cafe with local sweet treats as well as soups, sandwiches, hot dogs, potato chips, and more from local restaurants.
The committee running this event has thought of everything including offering local community partner organizations should you want to donate a purchase (such as Gifford Youth Activity Center, Children’s Home Society, and Hibiscus Children’s Home) and how to ship your item in the event you cannot pick it up. Free delivery was included in purchases over $1,000, which would include high bidders on many trees. There is also a children’s activity corner which was a huge success featuring games, crafts, and a photo booth.
Though it is too late to attend the event this year, I hope you will mark your calendars and try to make next year’s show.