16th Annual Festival Of Trees Kicks Off At 10 A.M. Saturday


The Home Instead Tree offers at chance to give a gift to a senior in need. Courtesy photo


Shoppers get ready for the 16th Annual Festival of Trees sponsored by Los Alamos MainStreet! The fun takes place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. tomorrow, Saturday at the Betty Ehart Senior Center. Vendors from Los Alamos and the region will have their wares for sale as part of the mini mall, located inside the local senior center.

Items for sale include hand beaded pictures, suitable for framing, fingerless gloves, big girl booties, handmade billfolds, bags, ornaments, gourds, leatherworks, jewelry, candles, drawings, crocheted scarves, door wreaths, and more.

The LAVA/RSVP quilters have been crafting up a storm. They have prepared the perfect gift giving items for the event, including; aprons, potholders, placemats, baby items, knitted hats, scarves, cloth books, patchwork ornaments and of course quilts. A quilt, donated to the silent auction of more than 100 items, is on display. 

“All the quilters and knitters in the group use their love of hand work to create items for sale and afterward donation,” Bobbie Simpson said. The many, many organizations they provide items to include; the Ronald McDonald House, the youth shelter in Santa Fe and Bienvenidos.

Many of the volunteers started by taking a class or having the tradition passed down to them. One has been sewing for 75 years. 

Cindy Harvey is a vendor that invites people to pay the senior center a visit. “The senior center is a wonderful pace to have conversations, a creative outlet and a place to take stress away.”

Janet Montoya and daughter Alix will be selling candles in seashells, hand drawings, bookmarks, and pendants. Janet’s artistic pendants are made with alcohol ink on yupo paper and are all original pieces. Her work is usually available at Karen Wray Gallery, but she will join the Festival of Trees to benefit youth and senior citizen programs. 

“The senior center has been a godsent sent for me,” said member Janet Montoya. “It is a place where I can socialize, volunteer, take classes, eat lunch, go on trips, and make new friends. The senior centers, both in White Rock and Los Alamos truly contribute to my well-being.”

Finally yet importantly, the opportunity to help others is alive and well this Saturday, beginning with the Home Instead tree, celebrating 10 years at the BESC. “It’s truly amazing year after year to see how the community shows love to local seniors thru this program,” said Ken Hendricks, the Community Service Representative for Home Instead Senior Care. “As the gifts come in and begin to literally pile up, since givers are anonymous, it really does take on the feel of being like Santa Claus himself is just dropping gift after gift for our local elders in need. It’s a very heartwarming experience to be part of it.”

Finally, the chance to stop and write a note of thanks to those serving in our military from here or married to someone from here. A Million Thanks is always available at the Betty Ehart Senior Center, but this time of year to donation of your time, money for postage or blank cards is appreciated throughout the holiday season.

If you have a receipt from a local business, dated during the month of November, you can register for a chance to win Chamber Checks.