Airdrie residents can purchase Christmas trees that are already decorated to raise money for the Boys and Girls Club of Airdrie (BGCA), as part of its sixth annual Festival of Trees.
The trees will be showcased individually on the club’s website and social media accounts Nov. 22 to 24 and will be on display at the BGCA centre Nov. 25 and 26, according to Jessica Nash, BGCA manager of events and volunteer co-ordination.
The trees are decorated and donated by local businesses, Nash said. Those interested in the trees can purchase raffle tickets for $5 and the winners will be drawn at the conclusion of the event Nov. 26 at 4 p.m.
The BGCA provides programs and services for children, youth and families of Airdrie and the surrounding area. Money raised from the Festival of Trees goes into programming offered by the BGCA, as well as supplies for its programs and operating The Centre, Nash said.
The club’s second annual Holiday Market will be held in conjunction with the event Nov. 25 and 26. Nash said it will include 30 vendors, including local artisans with handmade décor, crafts, jewelry and scarves, as well as representatives from direct sale companies.
The event will run from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. both days at The Centre, which is attached to the Ron Ebbesen Arena. Nash said it provides Airdrie and area residents with an affordable way to enjoy a festive event while also donating to the BGCA. Aside from tree sales, money is raised through table rentals for the market and a $2 admission fee or $5 for a family of four.
A Mrs. Claus Gift Shop will also be set up at the event for a second year, which Nash said was a hit last year.
“(Mrs. Claus) and her elves are busy (working) away. They have different tables that cost either $1 a gift, $2 a gift or $5 a gift and the little ones will go in there with Mrs. Claus and they look for different items for their family,” she said. “They love it because they actually are picking out a gift.”
The shop is open to kids only and Mrs. Claus wraps the gifts for them before they leave, Nash said. Christmas photos will also be offered by donation at the event.
“It’s a really great event that supports the Boys and Girls Club. In this day and age, everyone is in a financial situation that sometimes isn’t always the best, and that trickles down to organizations like us,” Nash said, adding donations have decreased in the last couple of years.
“If they can and they’re able to and they could come out and support (us), it’s a great way to make a big difference on the youth and the children that we support,” she said.
For more information, visit bgcairdrie.com