27th Annual Outer Banks Festival of Trees

The Holidays on the Outer Banks are a time of wonderful traditions and a remarkable spirit of giving. Perhaps no other event tells that tale as well as the Festival of Trees.

A benefit for Outer Banks Hotline, for 27 years, local businesses have been coming together to create Christmas trees filled with gifts that have been donated. The high bid takes the tree home and the proceeds support the programs of Hotline that include crisis intervention, a safe house, information and referrals and prevention education.

Held annually at the Outer Banks Brewing Station in Kill Devil Hills-other locations have been tried but they’re just not as good-the Festival is a three day affair with tonight (Thursday) for the kids . . . photos with Santa, hot chocolate, cookies and there was even a snippet of the Nutcracker Suite performed by the kids of Outer Banks Centre for Dance.

Friday and Saturday the adults come out to play with a Champagne Showdown and Zydeco Christmas on Friday and the Gala Holiday Social and Benefit Auction on Saturday.

The Auction is the big evening, at least for fundraising. Yet as important as the money is to help Hotline continue its programs, there is magic in watching kids light up when they see Santa in a room decorated with trees sparkling with lights and filled with the generosity of the community.