GREENFIELD – Walk through a winter wonderland of decorated trees, in an art exhibit designed to bring good humor to local charities.
The second annual Tree Festival is presented monthly at the Twenty North Gallery, 20 N. State St.
Ten local businesses and nonprofits decorated a tree for the exhibit and are asking residents to contribute monetary gifts or supplies for charities in need.
Wacky elf feet on top of a tree made from dozens of handcrafted ornaments by Cougar Cubs Preschool, for example. The nursery school collects new winter clothes for pupils in need.
Photographs of cats for adoption adorn a red and green tree, as the Hancock County Humane Society collects pet food and supplies for homeless animals.
And a faded literature garland and black top hat sport a Riley Boyhood Home tree, raising cash donations for Hope House.
Carol Barrett, gallery and events chair for Hancock County Arts, said the effort started last year as a way to raise awareness among local businesses. This year they added the goodwill touch of collecting items for charity.
âWe’re really excited to be able to actually allow people in,â she added, as last year the event was only online due to the pandemic.
The gallery is open from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. every Wednesday and Saturday (closed on Christmas Day). A photo of each tree is also posted daily on the Hancock County Arts Facebook page. People can vote for a Peoples Choice Award by commenting on a photo on facebook.com/HancockCountyArtsCouncil or by visiting the exhibit in person.
The exhibition is in conjunction with an exhibition of 77 paintings on the wall by Greenfield artist Gale Sturm. From old airplanes to landscapes to winter landscapes, the exhibition covers a decade of hand-framed oil paintings and stained glass by Sturm since his retirement as an art teacher at the school.
Barrett said they invite people to visit the gallery year-round, but Christmas is special and this exhibit makes sense with the mission of Hancock County Arts.
âChristmas trees are a work of art in many ways,â she said.