Tami Sirek’s seed bloomed into a forest.
Nearly 40 individuals, families and businesses in the Twin Towns Area are participating in the second annual Festival of Trees. Sirek, who created the local entertainment-philanthropy event, has been watching with pride as visitors of all ages check out the displays in Heritage Square, Wahpeton.
“The daycares come by to visit,” Sirek said. “Later in the day, people bring their friends and families to see the trees. It’s really something when you drive by at night and can see how the trees are all lit up.”
Festival of Trees displays will share the spotlight with the Wahpeton Christmas Tree, scheduled to be lit at 6 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 26. A Santa’s Workshop at Heritage Square opens that afternoon at 4 p.m.
“Register for prizes to be given away after the tree lighting,” states a flyer for the event. “Join us for goodies, giveaways and holiday cheer.”
Trees displayed in the festival will entertain Heritage Square visitors for a few more weeks before being distributed to area families. Without the contribution of festival participants and co-organizers Richland-Wilkin Kinship and Richland County Social Services, the families would not be able to have their own Christmas trees.
“I know families who started buying trees to prepare right after Christmas,” Sirek said. “Through the year, whenever they went shopping, they’d save items they liked. They were collecting all that time for this.”
Participants enjoy the team aspect of decorating trees, as well as providing to area families. This year’s trees are scheduled to be delivered on Sunday, Dec. 15 and Monday, Dec. 16.
Sirek is thankful for the participants, her co-organizers and the support of the Wahpeton Breckenridge Area Chamber of Commerce. The Festival of Trees might only be in its infancy, but it’s gaining a following.
“We’ve got nearly 40 participants. The festival at the Fargodome has 170 or so. They’ve been doing it for so many years, but I think that we are growing — with a mix of newcomers and returning participants — is wonderful,” Sirek said.
Look to Daily News for coverage of holiday events throughout the Twin Towns Area.