Festival of Trees opens Saturday

Sherry Martell
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TATAMAGOUCHE - Alison Hayman loves decorating Christmas trees because, she said, there is no end to the creative possibilities.
The Tatamagouche resident was at the Fraser Cultural Centre on Wednesday afternoon decorating a tree for the annual Festival of Trees hosted by the Northumberland Arts Council.
"It's really the start of the Christmas season for a lot of people," she said about the event.
This year she is decorating a tree to recognize the great number of children living in her neighbourhood in The Falls by collecting a pair of mittens from each child to hang on the tree.
"There's a story behind every pair," said Hayman, fixing a nametag onto a pair of tiny, pink mittens. "How many snowmen have these mittens made, or snowballs or forts? You think about that when you are hanging them."
Hayman's tree is one of about 20 that will be decorated by groups and individuals in the community and will be on exhibit at the centre for about a week.
The 23rd annual festival will also include a special display, Der Sterntaler (Star Coins), a wishing tree for people to place their own wishes on and a tree for children to decorate especially for Santa.
Doris Purdy, of Wallace, decorated a tree sponsored by the Wallace and Area Museum. She said it is nice to support initiatives in other North Shore communities because it benefits everyone.
"I like decorating trees and I use different things and different themes each year," she said, while unrolling a string of shiny red beads.
She planned on hanging a variety of newspaper angels on this year's tree.
The festival will officially open on Saturday, Dec. 5, from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. and will be open on Dec. 6 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. On Saturday, Dec. 12, the centre will be open at 3 p.m. starting with a bake sale and Santa will arrive at 4 p.m. On Dec. 13, there will be a luncheon from noon to 2 p.m. and a house tour, of four homes and two other locations, will be held from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. House tour tickets are available in advance at Raven Art Gallery and the Village Florist and cost $10 each.

smartell@trurodaily.com

Organizations: Fraser Cultural Centre, Northumberland Arts Council, Area Museum Raven Art Gallery

Geographic location: TATAMAGOUCHE, The Falls, North Shore

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