POUGHKEEPSIE – Family Services Inc. is holding its first “Festival of Trees” at the Poughkeepsie Tennis Club this weekend. The unique fundraiser was well-attended on Friday, December 10, and they are expecting an even larger turnout on Saturday.
Janna Whearty, a member of the Family Services Inc. Development Committee and the event chair suggested the idea a few years ago, but the timing was not right. “This event has given people, families, and organizations a chance to decorate a Christmas tree, wreath, or table centerpiece with the theme of their choice and have it auctioned off with the funds going to benefit Family Services. It’s a great way to get into the holiday spirit,” said Whearty.
All of the donated decorations are available through a silent auction that will be held on Saturday, December 11, at 3:00 p.m. The event, held at the Poughkeepsie Tennis Club, 135 S. Hamilton Street in Poughkeepsie, has all of the auction items on display, as well as more than 20 vendors selling unique products just in time for the holidays. At least 45 decorated and donated trees as well as more than 20 wreaths and table dressings are displayed and up for auction.
Poughkeepsie resident Marcia Rood-O’Neill was at the event Friday and was thrilled at the turnout. “This is spectacular,” she said, adding “I found one tree that is perfect for Tom’s office (her husband), and I have already started a bidding war. As of now, I’ve got the highest bid at $500.” Asked about the repercussions, she beamed with holiday joy, saying “It’s for a great cause, how could he be upset?”
Family Services Inc. Director of Development, Whitney Humphrey, noted that anyone that needs a tree, wreath, or handcrafted gift for someone needs to attend on Saturday. “We will be here at 10:00 a.m. on Saturday to welcome attendees. There’s a $10 admission fee for adults and admission for kids is free,” she said. “This is a great way to help Family Services and support local vendors while boosting holiday spirit.”
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