The Grinch could never have stolen the Christmas cheer from the Christmas Tree Festival and Carols by Candlelight last weekend. Hundreds of people flocked to the Town Hall to see the 90 Christmas trees and nativity scenes made by Forbes families, businesses, and school, church and community groups on display, while more than 800 people enjoyed a beautiful evening of carol singing and entertainment in Victoria Park on Sunday night.
According to Sue-Anne Nixon, President of the Forbes Rotary Ipomea who organised the Christmas Tree Festival, a lot of thought and planning had gone into the entries, which impressed the youngest to the most mature visitors. “Our Rotary Club holds this festival to give children a Christmas experience,” said Sue-Anne and “the joyful chatter of school children who visited on Friday afternoon to see the trees they made was worth a million dollars”.
There were some clever play on words with entries called ‘PoeTree’, ‘Pan-Tree’ (Pantry) and no one could miss the DentisTree with lolly teeth hung with dental floss. There was a nativity scene made with tractors complete with the ‘angel on high’. The Bruen family tree was a standout made with recycled products including chicken wire, baling twine and decorated with kookaburra feathers. Ben Crowley from Forbes Public School explained his class made their tree ornaments by decorating plastic cups then melting them. Susie and Amelia Kerr from the Forbes Playgroup painted homemade salt dough cookies, whilst Jemalong Village residents commenced work in May to ensure their tree was decorated in style.
The weekend’s Christmas cheer took on a tone of peace and joy at the annual Carols by Candlelight event, which saw a marked increase in people from last year. “It was a really good evening with a good crowd,” said Robyn Kenny.
Mayor Graeme Miller welcomed everyone, while Santa’s lap was never empty as kids could not wait to meet him with their best smiles on display. The evening saw a good line-up of entertainment with the crowd taking part in carol singing with the Forbes Town Band and Generosity Church Band. James Whalan’s Cantata Choir performed, as well as Leonie Burton and Maddi Collits among others. Judy Prior, dressed as an Elf, lead the events as compere for the night. The inflatable big screen once again proved to be useful for displaying carol words, and a slide show. The Forbes Lions Club ensured no one went hungry or thirsty.
By the end of the weekend many of us would agree with the Grinch: “Maybe, Christmas doesn’t come from a store. Maybe, Christmas perhaps is a little bit more.” If you didn’t get a chance to see the Christmas Tree Festival or attend the Carols, make sure to put it on your bucket list for December next year.
By Dianne Collie