Zonta Festival of Trees going virtual for 2020

With the pavilion at Spearfish City Park locked down due to the pandemic, area businesses throughout Spearfish will display the trees and wreaths to be auctioned at this years Zonta Club of Spearfish’s Festival of Tree; such as this delightful entry created by the Black Hills Pioneer and on display at Common Grounds. Pioneer photo by Alex Portal

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SPEARFISH — As with many holiday events this year, the Zonta Club of Spearfish is turning its annual Festival of Trees auction fundraiser into an online event.

“It was a long and hard decision to do it this way,” said Lorrie Redfield, president of the Spearfish Zonta Club.

For the past 29 years, the Zonta Club has held the event at the Pavilion in Spearfish City Park. The Festival of Trees would normally be a weeklong gala celebration featuring activities for senior citizens and students throughout the community capping off with the Friday night community gathering with food and silent auctions. This year, instead of a big, in door community event, the trees and wreaths to be auctioned off will be displayed around town, simultaneously avoiding health and safety concerns, as well as brightening the windows of many Spearfish businesses.  

“We know a lot of the smaller businesses have been struggling and we were hoping that putting the trees out there, that that would not only help us get our trees out there, but also help the businesses bring people in,” Redfield said.

Although Redfield said club members would miss the community get together, they’ve come up with a few ways folks can actively participate in the event this year.

“We’ll miss the getting together, because you know, the Friday night of the auction was always kind of our grand finale of the week,” she said. “To share in the fun and everything, we’re asking people If they go out and look at the trees… to take pictures and post #wrappingup2020, and that way hopefully we can get all the votes counted to see whose going to be the winner of the people’s choice this year.”

The Zonta Club’s cookie committee will also deliver cookies and baked treats to the various senior living facilities that would normally be participating in the week’s events. They’ve even worked out a way for jolly old Saint Nick not to miss out on the fun.

“Instead of having the Saturday with Santa … we’ve had a couple of sponsors that have sponsored movies. … Santa will be there,” Redfield said.

The movies with Santa will be “Jack Frost,” on Dec. 5, and “Rise of the Guardians,” on Dec 12. Santa will be there to say hi to the kids and pass out books.

Redfield said the community response to the changes have been mostly positive and grateful.

“It was a little disappointment at first, but I think that in lieu of the changes that are going on I think that they’re just happy that it’s not altogether going away,” she said.

The online auction will go live Wednesday at www.sturgisauctionsonline.com, and will end at 8 p.m. on Dec. 3. Winning bidders will be notified beginning Dec. 4. Redfield said there will be a special mystery item up for bids as well valued at $800, clues to what that mystery item is will be shared on the clubs Facebook page throughout the auction. Once the bidding has concluded, wreaths can be picked up at their perspective locations and trees will be delivered.

“I know we all miss getting together as a community and celebrating Christmas in this way as well in the pavilion,” Redfield said. “It’s been such a crazy year for everything and I’m just glad that everybody has wrapped their head around this new way of doing things.”

The full list of where decorated items will be displayed and the individual or company which sponsored them is the Matthews Opera House, donated by SHS Drama Club; the Real Estate Center, donated by the Real Estate Center; DeSmet and Biggs LLP, donated by the DC Booth Fish Hatchery; Creekside Bean & Vine, donated by TD Landscaping; Quik Signs, donated by Quik Signs; The Hot Room, donated by Nelson Chiropractic; VIP Properties, donated by Black Hills Psychology; Black Hills Community Bank, donated by Belle Vice; Junek’s Chrysler Jeep Dodge Ram, donated by Junek’s Chrysler Jeep Dodge Ram; Spearfish Creek Wine Bar, donated by Hauck Electric & Controls; Dakota Title, donated by Dakota Title; Bent Willow Designs, donated by Bent Willow Designs; Grace Balloch Memorial Library, donated by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints; CMG Financial, donated by CMG Financial; Redwater Kitchen, donated by Multiple Donors; White’s Canyon Ford, donated by White’s Canyon Ford; Jacket Zone, donated by BHSU Bookstore; White’s Queen City Motors, donated by Chris Gengler; Spearfish GMC Cadillac, donated by Our Saviours Lutheran Church; Kitchen Designs, donated by Kitchen Designs; Spearfish Chamber of Commerce, donated by Spearfish Chamber & Phillips 66; Northern Hills CASA, donated by Northern Hills CASA; Sandstone Senior Living, donated by Spearfish Canyon Lodge; Edgewood Vista, donated by American Legion Auxiliary; 2 Broke Girls. Donated by Melissa Haught; Dakota Title, donated by Dakota Title; Black Hills Dance Center, donated by Kassidy Kissack of Zyia; Farm Bureau Financial Services, donated by Farm Bureau Financial Services; Spearfish Brewing, donated by Mediation Matters; Great Western Bank, donated by Mediation Matters; Leavitt Heartland Insurance Services, donated by Kathy Caudill; Common Grounds, donated by the Black Hills Pioneer; Nonna’s Kitchen, donated by Monument Health Surgery Center; City Brew, donated by Shadow Sky Creative; Flying E Floral & Designs, donated by Flying E Floral & Designs; All About Potential, donated by Deadwood Rentals & Mediation Matters; The Joy Center, donated by Johanna Meier.

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