A major holiday-themed fundraiser concluded Thursday in Estevan, and it was a hit yet again.
The St. Joseph's Hospital Foundation's Festival of Trees had draws for the Ultimate Sweepstakes Raffle, with 22 prizes being won for a total of over $20,000 worth of items.
The foundation's executive director, Breanne Van De Woestyne, said the money they raised is still being tallied. But they were impressed with how everything turned out.
"The whole week and a half came to a great, exciting end. And we're just excited with the whole event."
The Festival of Trees is the largest annual fundraiser for the foundation. It was entirely virtual in 2020, due to COVID-19. But this year they were able to get back to having in-person activities.
A Christmas Headquarters, sponsored by DiscoverEstevan, was set up at the Estevan Shoppers Mall. And there was the Hometown Family Fun Day, which featured many free events (with a donation) in Estevan on Sunday.
"The biggest thing for us was being able to see people again," said Van De Woestyne. "Last year was 100-per-cent virtual, so it was really different for us. We were just excited to be back in the public eye and to really just see all of our community supporters that contribute to our hospital throughout the entire year."
The Christmas Headquarters, which was a new feature, was host to raffle prizes, silent auction items, take-home crafts for kids, and seasonal decorations.
"Being able to have the space donated by the Estevan Market Mall to offer a new way of presenting this big event for us was huge. And we're just very excited about how it all turned out. We had tons of people coming in and out of the mall space, checking out all the auction items, the trees, and just taking part in all the festivities around our community."
A Secret Santa with people in long-term care is next on the agenda for the foundation.