Festival of Trees brings holiday cheer to Buckhorn, Ont.

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The Buckhorn Community Centre has been transformed into a winter wonderland for this year's annual festival of trees. Caley Bedore has more on the importance of the event and how organizers have adjusted for the pandemic. – Dec 4, 2020

The Buckhorn Community Centre is looking more like the North Pole for this year’s Festival of Trees and one (appropriately named) organizer said it is hoping the event will bring some holiday cheer.

“Everyone is looking for something to make them feel good inside and this is one of those things,” Cindy Claus said.

“People come in and they feel like they are in a winter wonderland and it helps to raise people’s spirits.”

The event raises money for the community centre. Proceeds from the event go to operating costs at the centre. Claus said it costs about $750 a day to run the facility, a tall order when most fundraising events have been cancelled this year.

READ MORE: Annual Festival of Trees goes virtual this year

“The community has really stepped up,” Claus said. “Businesses and residents have come together to make this happen, despite the pandemic.”

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Claus said the centre has taken all the proper COVID-19 precautions and is following all of the protocols to keep everyone safe, but you can also take part online here.

Thirty trees are on display this year. They were donated by area businesses and decorated with a mix of things, including toys, gift cards, and beer.

Visitors buy their tickets, in person or online, and can choose which trees they’d like the chance to win. Organizers say the holiday cheer is guaranteed.

“If you come and tour this winter wonderland, it will give you a little bit of cheer,” said Linda Dill, a long-time patron and BCC volunteer. 

READ MORE: A safe celebration at the Kawartha Lakes Festival of Trees

Dill and Claus sasy the community centre is more than just a building.

“The community centre is the hub of the community,” Claus said. “This is where people develop friendships, comradery. It’s important for physical and mental health,” she said.

“I have been in this community for five years and I don’t know where I would be without it.”

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Dill agreed, and said now, more than ever, it is important to support the centre and the community.

“It is the heart of the Kawarthas. It draws people from everywhere — Bobcaygeon, Peterborough, Lakefield — everywhere,” she said.

For more information on The Festival of Trees and other upcoming events, you can visit the BCC website.

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