WESTFIELD – Westfield on Weekends’ DecemberFest events kick-off Nov. 27 with the third annual Tree Jubilee. The event will have a COVID twist, as do all events in 2020, but will still feature the beautifully decorated trees that participants can win in a raffle.
Following the success of Westfield on Weekends’ reimagined PumpkinFest, organizers have also reimagined DecemberFest, the city’s annual holiday celebration. This year, DecemberFest has three components: Tree Jubilee, a drive-by Holiday Light Challenge and Magic on the Air, a series of special programs with holiday themes that will air on the city’s cable access channel.
“We learned so much when creating and executing the events of PumpkinFest this past October,” Bob Plasse, WOW’s co-president explained. “Given the wild success of the Scarecrow Trail and the Haunted Houses tour, we felt that we could use elements of both events as a template to create activities that did not require in-person attendance.”
The virtual and in-person Tree Jubilee is Nov. 27-Dec. 6. This fundraiser supports WOW’s community programming and administrative fees. This year, it will take place virtually, as well as at Roots Athletic Center at 181 Root Road, where visitors may view a wonderland of more than 25 trees and wreaths, donated by area individuals, businesses and organizations.
“Since we are unable to predict the state of public gatherings in December, we have designed the jubilee so that folks can remain at home and still participate,” said Tree Jubilee Chair Lisa Sunderland Burns, adding that those who wish to see them in person are encouraged to do so.
“The large lobby outside of the new offices of Reminder Publications provides a great gallery space for the jubilee that has outgrown WOW’s downtown location on Elm Street,” Burns said. “We are happy to introduce this 100,000 square foot complex to many, who may have yet to see this incredible athletic facility, as well as showing off the recently relocated offices of Reminder Publishing and The Westfield News.”
As in past years, some of the trees and wreaths are designed by their crafters to reflect the work of their businesses or organizations, with some offering additional prizes and certificates within their branches. Visitors can purchase raffle tickets and could win a tree. The raffle will be drawn Dec. 6. To give everyone the opportunity to participate, the raffle will be online this year.
“It is important to note one change from last year,” Burns said,” raffle tickets may only be purchased and submitted online through WOW’s website at westfieldonweekends.com.”
Past trees included a pink tree adorned with dessert-themed ornaments, red, white and blue trees, trees decorated with animal ornaments and Westfield-themed trees that were decorated with black squirrel and bicycle ornaments.
Westfield Bank is the major sponsor of DecemberFest 2020 with additional funding from Lisa Olesak-Sullivan of Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage and in-kind support from Roots Athletic Center; WCPC; WSKB; and Reminder Publishing, the publishers of The Westfield News, The Reminder and Pennysaver. Funding has also been provided with a grant from the Westfield Cultural Council, a local program of the Massachusetts Cultural Council.