Festival of Trees: the kickoff to the holiday season in SCV

Volunteers work to decorate the 27 trees for the annual Festival of Trees event hosted by the Boys & Girls Club of SCV throughout this week. Nikolas Samuels/The Signal

The holiday season doesn’t start in the Santa Clarita Valley until the Boys and Girls Club puts on their annual Festival of Trees event.

This is the 14th year that families have been able to look at trees that were decorated by their neighbors in the community among many other activities.

“It’s widely considered the unofficial kickoff to the holiday season,” said David Menchaca, the CEO of the Boys and Girls Club.

The event is four days long and involves a magic show, drama recital, multiple dance performances, crafts and much more.

“The festival, really, it’s more than the trees, it’s a lot of community activities,” said Menchaca.

At least eight different organizations will decorate 27 different trees, each trying to put their own spin on their designs.

One such group was Princess Cruises, which has participated in the event every year since its inception. The tree was partly decorated by Lisa Black, the customer relations manager, with some help from her daughter, Emily Black, the president of the National Honors Society at Valencia High School.

“Since it’s the holiday season, it’s the time for giving,” said Lisa. “And it’s a time to give back.”

This is Emily’s fourth year participating in the Festival of Trees and she is happy to be doing it with her mom, who is decorating a tree for her first time.

“It’s really fun,” said Emily. “I’m glad she is here to support me. It’s something that is really important to me.”

Menchaca is hoping to raise around $100,000 from the event, which will help fund the programs and services offered by the Boys and Girls Club of SCV.

The Festival of Trees is Nov. 23-27 at the Santa Clarita Sports Complex located at 20870 Centre Pointe Parkway. General admission is $5. Some activities cost additional money such as the magic show and the Magic of Lights Gala.

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