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Festival of Trees Gala, auction benefit local agency
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Treva Jackson, left, and Susanne Pass of Buford take a look at jewelry Saturday during last year's annual Festival of Trees Gala at the Buisson Barn in Gainesville. The gala benefits Challenged Child and Friends of Gainesville.

Festival of Trees Gala

Challenged Child and Friends benefit

When: 7 p.m. Dec. 1; Noel Party starts at 5:30 p.m.

Where: Buisson Barn, 6354 J.F. Jay Road, Gainesville

Cost: $85 per person for gala, $150 per person for Noel Party

More info: www.challengedchild.org

Beautifully decorated Christmas trees are one of the holiday season’s most cherished traditions.

This season, partygoers will be able to view and bid on gorgeous decorated trees at the ninth annual Festival of Trees Gala to benefit Challenged Child and Friends.

The gala event is set for 7 p.m. Dec. 1 at Buisson Barn, 6345 J.F. Jay Road, Gainesville Gala party tickets are on sale for $85 each and can be purchased online at www.challengedchild.org.

Tickets may also be purchased for the Noel Party for $150 each. The party starts at 5:30 p.m. takes place inside the Buisson home, where guests have the opportunity to preview the family’s personal art collection.

The annual event is the largest fundraising event of the year for Challenged Child and Friends and features a live and silent auction.

Auction items include getaways, artwork and jewelry created by some of the best artists in the area, lunch with Gov. Nathan Deal and decorated Christmas trees and wreaths.

Funds raised through the gala go to provide scholarships and program funding for children with special needs.

Cindy Wilson, director of development and marketing for Challenged Child and Friends, said the auction is one of the premier auctions in the area.

All of the artwork showcased at the event was donated by local artists.

“We are so lucky to have such a wonderful community of artists here,” Wilson said.

This year, auction items are listed on the organization’s website. Bids may be made on items online until Friday.

Wilson said this the online bidding is a great addition to the gala’s auction because it gives people a chance to bid even if they aren’t able to attend.

The gala is expected to draw a crowd of more 200 people and black tie is optional.

“I hope that everyone will come out and join us Saturday,” Wilson said. “We will have TVs on at the gala, so don’t let that stop you. You can watch the SEC Championship in your tux and gown.”