The 20th annual Festival of Trees raised about $15,000 for local nonprofit organizations Wednesday, Dec. 4.
Proceeds include the auction of donated decorated trees and from a silent auction of donated items. Sponsored by the Cambria Chamber of Commerce, the event theme was “When Treetops Glisten.”
Actress and comedian Jill Turnbow handled the auction. Trees sold for an average of $500. Beneficiaries include the Boy Scouts, Friends of Fiscalini Ranch Preserve, the Homeless Animal Rescue Team and the Cambria Food Bank.
Food and wine donated by local restaurants and wineries were served. A host of volunteers made the event possible.
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Judges Renee Linn, Patricia Griffin and Bert Etling chose these winning trees:
• “Best of Show” went to Tish Roger’s artistic creation “Scenes of the Central Coast” with hand-painted oil renderings of local highlights and an overall blue theme. The tree went for the highest price of the night, $2,050.
• “Best Use of Festival Theme” was awarded to The Rotary Tree decorated by Paula Porter and Shellie Rose, with proceeds benefiting Rotary projects. The tree was titled “White Christmas in Cambria” and went for $800.
• The “Most Traditional Tree” award was given to Renee Rubin’s “Tree for all Senses” benefiting HART. The Tree featured fresh bunches of lavender and potpourri ornaments, spices and seeds, offering the buyer beauty, room freshening and a deep feeling of relaxation.
• “Most Creative or Unique Tree” was the “Countdown to Christmas Poet Tree” with 21 numbered ornaments to be opened each day before Christmas, in the manner of an advent calendar. Each had a treat and an original poem by poet and artist Celeste Goyer, who created the tree. Proceeds went to HART Guardian Angel Fund which provides medical care for injured animals.
• “Best Use of Children’s Theme” was given to the “Candy Crush Saga” tree by Lesley Hochschild. The oversized candy ornaments represent pieces in a popular digital game making the overall look of the tree extremely colorful and festive. The tree benefited Cambria’s Anonymous Neighbors, which offers many services for the Cambria community.