Festival of Trees tickets on sale now
November 27, 2012
By Marcia Morman
its seventeenth year, the Festival of Trees is
as vibrant as ever. This year the decision by
the Fry Healthcare Foundation and the Board of
Trustees of the Boundary Community Hospital is
to run the Festival of Trees on an all-volunteer
basis, preserving more of the monies generated
through donated pledges and auction items for
use in purchasing needed items for the local
Purchased items directly benefit the people in
the community. The more services available at
the local hospital, the more accessible
healthcare is to all Boundary County residents,
reducing traveling expenses and the expenditure
of time for the patient and the patient’s
With that in mind, Linda Hiatt of Riverside Auto
Center stepped up to organize and produce this
year’s Festival of Trees. It is no small
undertaking. Mrs. Hiatt is president of Fry
Healthcare Foundation and has been deeply
involved in years past. This is ratcheting up
her activities another notch, jumping past high
gear directly into overdrive.
The Festival of Trees has been trimmed to two
days: Family Day and Gala Night.
Family Day is Friday, December 7, 2012, and the
Gala Night is the following evening, Saturday,
December 8, 2012.
That is, it has been trimmed to two days, if you
do nothing but attend the events. However, for
many people in Boundary County, it is much more
than two days.
There are days of planning; days of writing
letters asking for sponsor pledges; days of
making wreaths and stockings; days of getting
bids from local restaurants.
Then there are more days: days of creating the
table and wall decorations; days of printing
posters, forms, and programs; days of preparing
a software program to make check-out easy; days
of contacting people to emcee and run the
auction; days of decorating trees; days of
scheduling “tree angels” to hover over the trees
safeguarding the treasures; and many more days
chock full of activities.
Linda, of course, does not do all of this.
Volunteers in the dozens help. Merchants,
businesses and individuals donate money, gift
certificates, and time to make the two-day event
memorable for all. The appeal to participate is
open. You are welcome, always.
So, what actually happens at the Festival of
The basic concept is that gifts are donated for
a silent auction and for a live auction on the
Gala Night, as well as to sell in a store called
The Boutique. These gifts include a Christmas
theme, such as beautifully decorated wreaths to
hang inside or outside the home, as well as
gifts that are welcome anytime of the year.
For instance, this year one of the donated items
is tickets to a Seahawk Game. The money raised
at the auction purchases the items of need
decided before hand by the Fry Healthcare
Foundation’s Board of Directors.
Friday, Family Day, begins at 10 a.m. It is a
time for everyone to come to the fairgrounds and
tour the trees and wreaths, munch on Christmas
cookies, listen to local musical talent sing and
perform, and visit with friends. Santa will
arrive around 6:30 p.m. and stay until closing
at 8 p.m.
If you have a hard-to-buy-for relative, check
out The Boutique. The Boutique will be filled
with gift items and open for shopping. The
admission fee for Family Day is $5 for a family
or a donation for the local food bank.
The Gala Night is more intense. Spirits are
running high. Much work has preceded the night
and everyone is anxious for his or her
contribution to be a success.
Jill’s Café will cater a delectable dinner. Many
people use the occasion to dress nicely — it is
a party, after all! Doors open at 5 p.m. with a
no-host bar. The Boutique is open for shopping.
Dinner begins at 6 p.m. The Silent Auction
begins at 6 p.m., and then the grand finale, the
Live Auction, begins at 7 p.m.
The crowd grows louder and livelier as the
auction continues. Someone wins a huge prize in
the Envelope game. Finally, the purchasing of
items is finished. The winning of prizes ends.
The checkouts are completed.
The next day, the Rod Benders will deliver the
trees to their new owners. Then, The Festival of
Trees committee packs everything away until next
year, when, about mid-summer, the Fry Healthcare
Board begins, once again, planning in earnest
for the next Festival of Trees.
Tickets for the Gala night are $35 in advance;
$40 at the door. Ticket sales outlet are
Boardwalk Boutique, Teresa’s Family Salon, The
Gift Gallery, Sugar Plum Floral, Riverside Auto
Center and online at
Please join the fun at the event of the year as
we celebrate and give! To learn more, call (208)
267-3141 extension 4234.
Questions or comments about this
Click here to e-mail!