Bringing in the season

Forty Webster City and Hamilton County organizations, restaurants, specialty shops, schools, daycares, churches, senior centers, garden programs and individuals are gearing up for the sixth annual Festival of Trees and Chili Feed. They are decorating trees, wreaths and tablescapes for the enchanted forest, preparing RVTV prize-winning chili, providing generous gifts for dollar donation raffle tickets and door prizes. This is one of the ways that the event’s host, All Cultures Equal (ACE), builds cultural acceptance, youth development, and equal opportunity through education, outreach, and cultural exchange.

The Festival of Trees and Chili Feed takes place at The Bridge on the corner of Des Moines and Division Streets this Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. both days. All-you-can-eat chili and cinnamon rolls will be served from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m. both days.

The Festival is an All Cultures Equal fund raiser with a $3 admission fee for adults, $1 for students, and children under age five attend for free. The chili feed is $5. Raffle tickets with the possibility of winning a 16GB iPad mini and 19 gift certificates, jewelry and house decor from local businesses are being sold at $1 each or six for $5. Donations will be used to deliver classes, programs, and events that empower people to become healthy, productive, and active citizens where they live and work.

Other prizes include an iTunes card, gift certificates to eight local restaurants, an overnight stay in a spa room at AmericInn, jewelry, a diffuser, a fresh evergreen basket, and gift certificates from local specialty shops. The drawing and door prize winners will be announced at 3:45 p.m. on Sunday. Winners do not need to be present to win.

The enchanted forest will magically kindle the senses as attendees experience dozens of stories that the exhibitors will share through their original displays. The forest depicts how all cultures work together because the decorations have been created by young children and adults of all ages and represent diverse backgrounds and interests.

ACE Director Janet Toering said festival-goers should bring a hardy appetite to eat as much prize-winning chili as they want. The Grid Iron and the Farwells, Wunschels, and Hartnetts from Church of Christ and Webster City Community Schools are preparing their winning chili from the popular RVTV Chili Cook-off. The Chili Feed will be a traditional Webster City chili lunch complete with cinnamon rolls.

For more information, contact Toering at 450-4973.