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Pelham - Windham News 6 - December 3, 2010

Festival of Trees Alight at Sherburne Hall

by Karen Plumley A brisk, chilly weekend is a reminder to


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Pelham residents that winter is on its way. In particular, folks in need will be hurting during the holiday season, and one way to lend a helping hand while teaching children about the true meaning of the holidays is to attend the Southern New Hampshire Festival of Trees at Sherburne Hall. Hosted by Pelham Community Spirit, the Festival of Trees is in its second season this year, with hopes to raise money for local charities, including the Pelham Food Pantry and the Good Neighbor Fund. “We raised $10,000 last year for charity and community events,” noted festival organizer and Pelham Community Spirit President Mark Jedraszek. For a $5 entrance fee (free for children under 12), residents and friends can view 34 dazzling, uniquely decorated trees that were donated by various local businesses, families, and non-profit groups. Beautiful wreaths and gingerbread houses can also be seen. Each evening, a different local organization will be found in the Town Hall lobby selling baked goods. On Friday evening, November 26, the MOMS Club of Pelham worked the bake sale table. The trees will be raffled off in a ceremony to be held on Saturday December 4, the last day of the week-long festival that opened the day after Thanksgiving. “Every tree and item in the hall must go,” said Jedraszek. A sheet of 25 raffle tickets will cost an additional $5. Visitors may want to buy two sheets. The enticing holiday forest includes “A Silly Beanie Christmas” (submitted by Granite State Bounce, LLC) – an evergreen entirely decorated in Beanie Babies, “Mexican Fiesta” (submitted by the Kenney- Takesian-Lynde families) – a cactus-shaped tree with hot pepper lights and a basket of Mexican fiesta goodies, and “Patriotic” (submitted by A Handy Company) – a red, white, and blue tree encircled by an impressive, kid (or kid-at-heart)- pleasing toy train and tracks. Other trees include a money tree, a lottery ticket tree, a tree decked out with New Hampshire Motor Speedway event tickets, and trees decorated with kitchen utensils or quilting and sewing items. On its first weekend run, the festival had a good showing. According to Jedraszek, attendees ranged

Early Saturday morning, November 27, Kylee Jedraszek, 10, and her sister Elyce, 8, help dad set up for what will prove to be a busy day at the Festival of Trees in Sherburne Hall

Many uniquely decorated Christmas trees can be found at this year’s Southern New Hampshire Festival of

Trees. Shown here is “Mexican Fiesta,” submitted by the Kenney-Takesian-Lynde families

from approximately 100 to 200 per evening. Special attractions for the weekend included a visit from Santa and Mrs. Claus on both Saturday and Sunday afternoons, a Christmas choo-choo- train ride for young children along the Village Green, and a delectable variety of sweet treats available at the bake sale. Monday evening was senior night, and older guests were welcomed for free. Pelham Community Spirit – founded over a decade ago – fosters a sense of community by hosting seasonal events throughout the year. The Festival of Trees is just one of these, as is the Independence Day celebration and the summer Concerts on the Village Green series. The group also helps maintain the Pelham Ice Garden. Over the years, the organization has grown to include the Friends of Sherburne Hall, St. Patrick’s School, and many community-minded individuals from Pelham and surrounding towns. The Festival of Trees is being sponsored by the generous donations of local businesses. For a list of sponsors, and to learn about the organizations who submitted trees and other gifts for the Saturday, December 4 raffle, visit the Website at www.snhfestivaloftrees. com.

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