The 17th Annual Festival of Trees returns to the Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center in November. Experience the winter wonderland of trees gorgeously decorated and generously bedecked by local businesses to raise money for Goodwill Industries of Southwest Florida and SBDAC, plus many events all taking place Nov. 30 to Dec. 3.
Presented by Publix Super Markets Charities, Festival of Trees is a huge holiday destination downtown where beautiful trees decorated and adorned with presents on, under and around the trees by local businesses are raffled off to help raise money for Goodwill Industries of Southwest Florida and the Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center. Offering family events for every age, the seasonal celebrations begin with a ticketed preview party on Wednesday, Nov. 29, from 6 to 8 p.m. Come get into the holiday spirit with a sneak preview of the Festival of Trees and celebrate with hors d’oeuvres, a silent auction, and wine pull.
A holiday themed wine and paint night will be a ticketed offering on Thursday, Nov. 30 from 6 to 9 p.m. ‘Tis the season to get creative with one of SW Florida’s favorite local artists, Dharma Lefevre. This talented and quirky elf will demonstrate how to create a gorgeous wintery landscape. Each artist will be supplied with canvas, paint, brushes, and of course… wine.
Mayor Kevin Anderson will continue the annual tradition of lighting the massive wreath gracing the loggia of the SBDAC followed by live music out on the street from Rosaline – a free event happening Friday, Dec. 1 from 7 to 10 p.m.
Santa’s Block Party will be held Saturday, Dec. 2 from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. Join Santa for family fun and holiday festivities! Santa’s Block Party is an opportunity for kids to enjoy student performers, create holiday art, color Christmas and holiday cards, decorate yummy cookies from Publix Super Markets, enjoy a train ride, and write letters to Santa and our military service members! Free entry, with Kids Workshop Bags available for purchase at the event.
Lee Schools Holiday Showcase will be featured on the outdoor stage later that evening, another free event, on Dec. 2 from 6 to 10 p.m.
The popular Tree Raffle Drawing when all trees and gifts will be raffled off to the lucky winners is scheduled for Sunday, Dec. 3 at 5 p.m. Except for the tree being donated to Golisano Children’s Hospital, all trees are valued at over $1,750 each and will be making spirits bright in their new locations. Notified winners will receive the themed tree plus all of the gifts on and around, including delivery and set up.
Bring new, unwrapped toys to donate and get free admission to the festival. Friends of Janet Foundation, FOJ, is a 501(c)(3) foundation formed in loving memory of Janet and Ann to honor their service to others and to build a legacy of giving in their names. Janet Wilson and her sister, Ann Wilson, were long-time residents of Southwest Florida devoted to community and giving back. Janet often pulled together friends to help support her various charities, who jokingly called themselves the ‘friends of Janet’. Just before their tragic car accident in 2019, they were gathering toys to be given away during the holiday season. Toys will be collected at all Festival of Trees events, and at various other partner businesses, and will then be distributed to local children’s charities.
The Festival of Trees general admission is $2 per person, (5 and under free) for viewing, voting for favorites, and purchasing raffle tickets ($10 each, 3/$25, 10/$50, 25/$100).
For more information call 239-333-1933 or visit the website at www.sbdac.com for details, tickets and to check for possible schedule changes. The Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center is located at 2301 First St. in the historic downtown Fort Myers River District.