With the executive team at Revelstoke’s Community Connections on hand, Naomi Morgan, the Front Office Manager for Sutton Place Hotel, is ready to hand over a cheque for $1,000. Hand drawn Christmas trees adorn the envelope, which was decorated by her team.
Morgan organized this past season’s Festival of Trees at the Sutton Place hotel. For several weeks, residents and tourists alike could vote for their favourite tree for a minimum donation of $5. The event culminated in a Tree Pageant evening, where the winning tree was announced.
“The entire team from Revy Outdoors was there,” says Community Connection’s Tom Zuliniak.
Revy Outdoors came in second place, losing by only two votes to Parks Canada. Both trees were beautiful and very different. Parks Canada had carved their own wooden bear statues; Revy Outdoors hand strung popcorn and dried orange slices. There were no hard feelings.
“The businesses enjoy the competitive side of it,” says Morgan.
In previous years, the event raised an average of $285. Two years ago, it jumped significantly to the thousand dollar mark, and Morgan knew she wanted to keep it there.
“Looking for little ways to give back to the community is really important to me. I want to keep it going year after year and grow it as big as possible to get as much awareness as we can,” says Morgan. “I grew up watching how this society affected the community, so it’s really special to me to be able to help out.”
Morgan is thinking about next year and how to expand the event, as she is already getting inquiries from businesses and groups who want to get involved.
“We are limited to ten spots at the moment, so we will see if I can get creative and figure out a way to make more space for next year,” she says.
Community Connections was grateful for the donation. While the holidays bring display the community’s generosity, which is greatly appreciated, January marks a swift decline in giving.
“We really appreciate the donation,” says Community Connection’s Patti Larson. “It’s hours of work to run any event; thank you from all of us.”
Anyone interested in donating to Community Connections throughout the year. For information, please visit http://community-connections.ca/ways-to-donate/