Organizers gearing up for Festival of Trees

  • Oct. 3, 2012 3:06 p.m.

With the Red Deer’s Festival of Trees right around the corner organizers are busy preparing for the Christmas fundraiser.

The Red Deer Regional Health Foundation, staff and volunteers are working diligently with much excitement and anticipation of their own, preparing for what they believe to be the best Festival yet, officials have said.

Festival of Trees runs Nov. 23-25 at Westerner Park.

The Festival Lights the Night (formerly referred to as The Biggest Tree Festival) has been moved to run on the afternoon/early evening of Nov. 17th beginning at 4 p.m.

“It was felt that having the free family activity run on a weekend rather than a week night will give more people the opportunity to attend this great event, as well as reduce the disruption of traffic and business operations in the downtown core,” said Alaine Martin, project officer for The Festival of Trees. “Plans are also in the works to change the parade route, which we hope will result in a longer route, as well as offer a great variety of activities for both young and old to enjoy in City Hall Park.”

This year, an addition has been provided to enhance the Santa Claus Parade, which runs in conjunction with Festival Lights the Night on Nov. 17th. Bilton Welding & Manufacturing Ltd. has provided prize money for the parade. All parade entrants will have a chance to take home four different prizes. First place will be awarded $2,000, second place will receive $1,500 and $1,000 is up for grabs for third place. There will also be $500 for the People’s Choice Award.

“We realize to have the ability to offer our participants a chance to win this cash is not typical of area parades, and we are honoured to be able to offer it, and truly hope that it will make this parade better than ever,” said Martin.

For nearly two decades, the Festival of Trees has provided festive activities to the community in support of the Red Deer Regional Hospital Centre. Since its beginnings, the Festival of Trees has raised more than $8.2 million to enhance health care at the Red Deer Regional Hospital Centre.

Proceeds raised from the 2012 Festival of Trees will go towards upgrading equipment and technology for Laboratory Services in the Department of Histopathology.

This new technology and equipment will help increase the capacity to maintain acceptable timelines for laboratory testing for the growing needs at the Red Deer Regional Hospital.

Meanwhile, tickets for the Festival of Trees special events went on sale this past Monday. They can be purchased online at www.ticketmaster.ca or by phone at 1-855-985-5000. They can also be purchased at the Centrium box office.

The Festival will be open for public hours on Nov. 23rd and 24th from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., and Nov. 25th from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

For more information on this year’s events, check out www.reddeerfestivaloftrees.ca.

efawcett@reddeerexpress.com

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