It’s a tradition that is dear to Lake in the Hills families, and one that helps other families.
The Festival of Trees returns at 6 p.m. Friday, Dec. 7 at Lake in the Hills village hall, 600 Harvest Gate.
Each holiday season LITH’s village hall is transformed into a winter wonderland. Through the Festival of Trees event, the Parks & Recreation Department spearheads one of the year’s largest food drives to help local food pantries bring Christmas cheer to area residents.
Santa and Mrs. Claus will arrive by fire truck at 6 p.m. to perform the tree-lighting ceremony then will stay to meet and greet families.
After viewing the trees, spectators can “vote” by placing non-perishable household items under their favorite tree.
There are 25 trees that will be decorated by local business and organizations, said Megan Melendez, a Lake in the Hills Park & Recreation supervisor. Some trees are elaborately decorated and some are simple and cute, she said.
Between 750 and 1,000 people go to the festival and many more vote throughout the month, she said. Families will be able to make reindeer food and do other activities while waiting in line to see Santa. Each family also received a gift card to Netflix and popcorn.
This is the first year Melendez is organizing the event and she finds it’s a fun family event and something that makes people happy, she said.
Voting and donations accepted at village hall through December 17 and trees will remain on display through December 25 to allow for ample time to “vote”. All items collected during this event will be donated to the Lake in the Hills/Algonquin Food Panty and the Grafton Township Food Pantry, whose dedication to helping local residents in need is especially appreciated during the holiday season.
Contact the Village of Lake in the Hills Parks & Recreation Department at 847-960-7460 with any questions.