Welcome to the magical world of Deep Creek Lake, where the air is crisp, the mountains stand tall, and the holiday season is celebrated with unparalleled charm. One of the highlights of this festive time is the Festival of Trees, taking place this November 24th and 25th. This heartwarming event ignites the holiday spirit but while also supporting the esteemed Garrett County Dove Center.
What is the Festival of Trees?
Photo credit: Garrett County Chamber of Commerce
A Winter Wonderland at Deep Creek Lake
November 24th and 25th, Deep Creek Lake transforms into a winter wonderland, setting the perfect stage for the Festival of Trees. Held annually at the Garrett County Fairgrounds, this event brings together the community in a celebration of joy, unity, and generosity. Local businesses and organizations decorate and showcase uniquely adorned Christmas trees, each telling a story of creativity and holiday spirit.
Photo credit: Deep Creek Lake & Garrett County Facebook Page
The Festival has evolved to include something for everyone. Adults and children are in awe as they stroll through the forest of decorated trees, wreaths, and centerpieces donated by local designers. Hours of Christmas entertainment is available through Frosty’s Funland, where children create keepsake crafts (this year’s theme is Frosty), sand art, and have their faces painted in holiday themes. Mrs. Claus’ Bakery is open both days, where children decorate Christmas cookies with the guidance of Mrs. Claus herself! They are then on their way to the Crazy Christmas Hair booth, where they emerge with styles from The Grinch’s Whoville! Several characters will make appearances throughout the day, including Santa, Mrs. Claus, Frosty, and Gingerbread man, as well as Elf and Elsa. Free entertainment includes SuGO interactive Lego robotics demonstrations Friday and Saturday. (Photo credit: fetcg.org)
Adults and children can get a jump on Christmas shopping, as well. Children can shop and wrap for just $1 per gift in the Elfenheim Mall. Adults can browse for hours through nearly 50 craft and artisan vendors, or purchase from the newly expanded “Buy It Now” area, which includes hundreds of quality items at great prices. They are sure to find the perfect, unique gift for that special someone.
A variety of concessions are available throughout the day, in Mrs. Claus’ kitchen, and the Kona Ice truck will be on-site, offering delicious shaved ice treats! For a truly memorable day, families can begin with Breakfast with Santa, to be served Friday and Saturday morning at 9 am or 10 am. Reservations are required for breakfast.
The grand finale of the event is Saturday evening at 6 pm, when the live auction begins. Registered bidders can relax and enjoy light refreshments and a cash bar by Dutch’s at Silver Tree, and bid on a favorite tree, wreath or centerpiece (free Garrett County delivery within a 30 mile radius). No buyer premium!
Friday, November 24: 9 am- 5 pm
Saturday, November 25: 9 am – 4 pm
Saturday November 25: 6 pm, Grand Finale Auction
A Spotlight on Charity: The Garrett County Dove Center
A Haven for Hope
The Festival of Trees is an annual event, benefiting the Garrett County Dove Center. Since its inception, it has raised over $200,000, which has helped the agency to leverage State and Federal Grant funds by acting a match. The Dove Center is a beacon of hope for those affected by domestic violence and sexual assault. Committed to providing support, advocacy, and education, the Dove Center plays a vital role in creating a safer and more compassionate community.
Lori Livingston, one of the owners of Red Barn Vacations, serves on the Board of Directors for the Dove Center. As a company and as individuals in our community, Red Barn Vacations is dedicated to supporting the Dove Center and those in our community affected by domestic violence and sexual assault.
During the Festival of Trees, visitors have the opportunity to contribute to the Dove Center’s mission. Whether through direct donations, participating in charity auctions, or purchasing items with proceeds supporting the center, the festival serves as a platform to make a real difference in the lives of those who need it most.
How You Can Get Involved
Attend the Festival of Trees
If you find yourself in the Deep Creek Lake area during the holiday season, don’t miss the chance to attend the Festival of Trees. Immerse yourself in the festive atmosphere, enjoy the beautifully decorated trees, and participate in the various activities designed for all ages.
Donate Directly to the Garrett County Dove Center
For those unable to attend the festival but still eager to make a positive impact, consider making a direct donation to the Garrett County Dove Center. Every contribution, no matter the size, helps create a safer and more supportive environment for individuals and families in need.
This holiday season, let’s come together to celebrate the magic of the Festival of Trees, spreading joy and making a difference in the lives of those less fortunate. Through the combined efforts of the community and the invaluable work of the Garrett County Dove Center, we can truly embody the spirit of giving.