Festival of Trees included a number of trees and wreaths donated by local businesses and individuals. This year they raised almost $53,000 for two charities. (Marisca Bakker photo)

Festival of Trees included a number of trees and wreaths donated by local businesses and individuals. This year they raised almost $53,000 for two charities. (Marisca Bakker photo)

Festival of Trees grows

Annual event brings in more for charity than last year.

The annual Smithers Festival of Trees brought in more money this year than ever before.

The event ran from Nov. 29 to Dec. 7 inside the showroom of Glacier Toyota.

“It was fantastic, the event went over very well, had more particpation than ever before, the community came out in a huge way,” Glacier Toyota’s General Manager Scott Olesiuk said.

A new record was set with $52,932.95 raised, smashing the organizers’ goal of $50,000.

“Early on we saw a lot of opportunity to hit our goal based on the community coming out and offering up a lot of great items to bid on,” added Olesiuk. “We had the items available so we were very hopeful that we would hit that target.”

The annual event, held in the showroom of Glacier Toyota, raises money through a silent auction which is divided between two charities: the local Salvation Army and the Bulkley Valley Child Development Centre, a non-profit which offers services and programs to children and families in the region.

“Both organizations have been with us from the start and are very amazing in our community and offer so much support for families in the northwest and we are very commited to them,” said Olesiuk.

Last year they raised $35,000.

-with files from Trevor Hewitt