Treefest brings community together

About 22 decorated trees of various styles filled Whitman County Library



Tomara Jackson, left, stands with Hannah Croskey and the wood-crafted, award-winning tree she designed for Pullman Building Supply.

ANDREA GONZALEZ, Evergreen reporter

The Whitman County Library held its eighth annual Festival of Trees and fourth annual Jingle and Mingle event in December. 

Sheri Miller, Whitman County Library associate director and youth services manager, said the Jingle and Mingle event was sponsored by the Colfax Chamber of Commerce and Friends of Whitman County Library. 

Kristie Kirkpatrick, Whitman County Library director, said around 250 people attended the Jingle and Mingle event this year. 

Jingle and Mingle had a name change this year, she said. It was formerly known as Art Among the Trees, she said.

Sarah Phelan, Whitman County Library public services librarian, said each tree has different themes and were either decorated by businesses, individuals or organizations. 

Miller said around 22 trees were on display for the Festival of Trees. 

Kirkpatrick said some tree themes were Legos and Alice in Wonderland. 

Kirkpatrick said other trees had themes involving sports, veterans and law books. 

Phelan said some trees were decorated with bolts and nails, stuffed mice and white bird cages. 

Some tree entries included participants from Jennings Elementary, Pullman Building Supply and Palouse Knot Barn, Phelan wrote in an email to The Daily Evergreen. 

Several prizes were given for the trees, Phelan said. The People’s Choice award was given to Route 26 Vintage Market, the Judge’s Choice award was given to Bryan Johnson of Palouse and the Kid’s Choice award was given to Jennings Elementary Teachers, she said. 

“The Festival of Trees depends so heavily on community participation,” Kirkpatrick said. “[It] is more of a fun holiday celebration and less of a fundraiser than other tree fests.”

The event also had a raffle which was sponsored by Pioneer Title Company, she said. Tickets were sold for $1 and proceeds went to a library program for children, she said.

Phelan said the Summer Reading Program is where children will read 10 books or 10 hours during the summer. The program also offers educational events throughout the summer. 

The 12 winners of the 12 Ways of Giving raffle were announced during the Jingle and Mingle event, Phelan said. 

The event also had refreshments, holiday music and artwork for people of all ages to enjoy, she said.

“We really want to work to make it a holiday tradition that doesn’t cost people money,” she said.