Date: December 6, 2016
Contact: Sharon Crosby
Re: Festival of Trees Winner
TOCCOA, GA – December 6, 2016 – The ninth annual Festival of Trees was held on December 2 – 3 in the Historic Courthouse in downtown Toccoa. Nine trees were on display receiving a total of over 500 total votes. For $1 visitors were able to vote for their favorite tree. Businesses, non-profit organizations, and local citizens decorated the trees, many with themes that reflected their organization. Each group received the proceeds from their votes. In addition to the money received from the vote, the tree with the most votes won a $500 grand prize.
The groups participating this year were; Deborah’s Magic Mirror for Meals on Wheels, City of Toccoa for Stephens County 4 H Club, Stephens County Government for Open Arms Clinic, Toccoa Stephens County Chamber of Commerce for Neighbors 4 Neighbors, Toccoa Stephens County Literacy Council for the Literacy Council, First Alliance Church for the Salvation Army, 1st Franklin Financial for Reins for Life, Northeast Georgia Physicians Group for Power House for Kids, Toccoa Rotary Club for Coins for Alzheimer, and Valley Farm at Toccoa Falls College for Food 2 Kids.
The tree with the most votes over the two - day display was Valley Farm at Toccoa Falls College. The money will go to help the Food 2 Kids program in Stephens County. The program aims to bridge the weekly weekend hunger gap by providing free sacks of child friendly and child specific foods that are easy to open, nutritious, and do not require any cooking. The Food 2 Kids program provides approximately six meals and two snacks each weekend that school is in session (40 weeks) to previously identified school children
Although much of the food the Food Bank of Northeast Georgia receives is donated, the majority of food for the Food 2 Kids program is not. Purchase of the food for this program is required to ensure a balanced, nutritional, child friendly, reliable source of food for the growing and developing children this program serves. For less than a dollar a meal, the Food Bank of Northeast Georgia can provide 240 meals to a child each school year.
The Food Bank of Northeast Georgia relies on community partners to prevent malnutrition during the critical stages of development. Each week volunteers pack and deliver these bags to various schools throughout the community. School officials then distribute the sacks to the students. To learn more about this program or how to become a participating Partner Agency contact the Programs Coordinator, Beegee Elder at email@example.com.
“Congratulations to Valley Farm for winning the most votes. All the trees were beautiful and each group worthy of the money that was raised,” said Sharon Crosby, City of Toccoa Special Events Coordinator. “We would like to thank each organization and business that put up a tree. Each one was beautiful and reflected the group they represented.”