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November 23, 2010 > Trees of Angels

Trees of Angels

By Julie Grabowski

Pine scented trees, twinkling lights, carols, and peppermint-flavored treats. The season of comfort and joy is upon us, with all of its much-loved traditions and festivities. Beginning Monday, November 29, Washington Hospital Healthcare Foundation lights up the night with their 15th annual Trees of Angels.

With three city tree lightings and the Children's Holiday Breakfast, Trees of Angels offers some Christmas cheer while raising funds and awareness for hospice care in the Tri-Cities. Hospice is end-of-life home care, providing medical, emotional, and spiritual support for those with a terminal illness, helping them maintain comfort, dignity, and peace in their last days.

Since its founding in 1996, Trees of Angels has raised almost $370,000 for hospice care in the Tri-City area. All funds raised support Pathways Hospice, a community-based, non-profit organization providing home health services to families.

A $10 donation symbolically lights one of the bulbs on the tree, in memory of a loved one or to aid those in the community needing hospice care. Elected officials will have the lighting honors; Fremont Mayor Bob Wasserman will kick things off at the Bernardin McDonald's on Mission Boulevard in Fremont, Union City Council Member Carol Dutra-Vernaci will light the tree at Union City's Nakamura Clinic, and Mayor David Smith will preside at Newark City Hall. Besides the grand lighting of the tree, a family who has been through hospice care will share their experience, and ceremonies will offer cookies, treats and coffee, singing by local students, and raffles. Raffle items include decorated three-foot trees, toys, and gift baskets. Live wreaths will also be available for purchase for $35.

The Children's Holiday Breakfast on Saturday, December 4 allows children to share breakfast with special guests Ronald McDonald and Santa Claus. In addition to a McDonald's breakfast and Happy Meal Toy, there will be a Ronald McDonald Magic Show, photo with Santa, and raffle prizes. Two decorated three-foot trees will be among the prizes up for grabs. Attendees may register at the door, but pre-registration is encouraged as seating is limited.

Sponsors RK Electric, Inc., Bernardin Family McDonald's, Fremont Ford, Sycomp, and Fremont Bank help make Trees of Angels possible. Taking part in these events is a great way to embrace the Christmas spirit and provide much needed aid and comfort to local families throughout the year.

For more information on Trees of Angels contact the Washington Hospital Healthcare Foundation at (510) 791-3428. Donation forms can be found on the Foundation's website at www.whhs.com/foundation/foundation-events.

Tree Lighting Ceremonies and Holiday Breakfast:

Tree Lighting Ceremony
Monday, November 29
6 p.m.
McDonald's
42800 Mission Blvd., (Mission and Hwy.680) Fremont

Tree Lighting Ceremony and Union City Chamber of Commerce Mixer
Wednesday, December 1
5:30 p.m.
Nakamura Clinic
33077 Alvarado-Niles Rd., Union City

Children's Holiday Breakfast
Saturday, December 4
8:30 a.m. (Registration 8 a.m.)
Washington West
2500 Mowry Ave., Fremont
Cost: $10 per person (Reservations recommended by Nov. 29)

Tree Lighting Ceremony
Monday, December 6
6 p.m.
Newark City Hall
37101 Newark Blvd., Newark

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