Halloween is almost behind us which means the Christmas season is about to begin.
The 10th anunual Wonderland of Trees will be returning in November to Three Star Mall. Trees, center pieces, gingerbread houses, wreaths and many other crafts will be available in a silent auction. The money at this auction goes to Caring Hearts United which was created by Dianne Sneed and her sister, the late Melinda Breedlove.
Sneed and Breedlove lost their mother to cancer, and after the help from a hospice nonprofit made their lives easier, they wanted to return the favor. The original organization became for-profit, which led the duo to create Caring Hearts United, an organization that creates baskets for hospice patients during holidays.
June 2010 was the first time the decoration auction was held and by December of that year Wonderland of Trees was created. Sneed said, “My sister, she came up with the idea.” The auction lasts all week from Nov. 16-21.
People can bid on their favorite decorations all week. Spotters are available if you aren’t able to physically be present for a bidding war. Sneed said, “I enjoy the bidding and it can get interesting.” She said she was a spotter once, and it got very competitive.
There have been a variety of trees and decorations such as a tree that looks like a snowman, a peacock-themed tree, and traditional trees. “One year, we had a community center that decorated a turkey-hunting tree,” Sneed said about a past decoration.
There will be live entertainment on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. On Nov. 21, children can play games, make ornaments, and get their nails painted by a princess. Tickets for the games are available to purchase, but the event is free, unless you buy a Christmas tree.
Sneed said, “One of our ladies in our organization contacted artists from all over the United States.” Crafters from Alaska have even shipped items to be sold in the auction.
Founder Melinda Breedlove passed away in February to cancer, but that didn’t stop Dianne. She said, “There was no question if we were going to do it.”
Melinda was very excited to make it to 10 years, and there was no way Sneed was going to miss it.
All the trees are created by organizations, churches, individuals, and Caring Hearts United. The auction closes at 8 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 21. The Wonderland of Trees will last the entire week at Three Star Mall. You can contact Caring Hearts United for information about the event, volunteering, and donating a tree.