Festival adds a challenge

NANAIMO: The Vancouver Island University Foundation has a new twist to its 18th annual Festival of Trees celebration.

Jason Nelson

Jason Nelson

The Vancouver Island University Foundation has a new twist to its 18th annual Festival of Trees celebration.

The Community Tree Decorating Challenge, sponsored by TD Bank, is open to everyone in the community, businesses, community organizations and individuals who want to put their creative hats on and decorate a tree to be on display at this year’s event Nov. 22-30 at the Vancouver Island Conference Centre.

“The Festival of Trees is Nanaimo’s largest holiday celebration and this is an opportunity for businesses, community groups and individuals to get creative and help raise funds for VIU students,” said Jason Nelson, festival chairman. “With thousands of visitors viewing the trees over the course of the event, the decorating challenge will provide participants with great exposure for their festive creation and the chance to win the honour of favourite tree at the gala.”

Attendees to the festival can vote for their favourite tree and public voting will take place at the RBC Festival Reception on Nov. 22 and throughout Island Savings Family Days on Nov. 24-25.  The winner will be announced at the Festival Gala Nov. 30. Organizers of the winning tree will receive two tickets to the gala.

Applications for the Community Tree Decorating Challenge are available on the festival website,www.viu.ca/festival.

All interested groups will supply their own artificial tree, creative design ideas, decorations and a group to decorate it.

The deadline for applications is Nov. 15 and tree decorating will take place at the VICC Nov. 17-18.

The Festival of Trees is Vancouver Island University’s premier fundraising event.

Proceeds provide much-needed financial support for the students of VIU and are used to create state-of-the art learning facilities on campus.

Last year’s festival raised $85,000.

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