Midwinter Christ­mas bells ring­ing

Matamata Chronicle - - News - By TERESA HATTAN

If you’ve been crav­ing a Christ­mas mince tart de­spite the fact it’s only June – have no fear.

Next week’s Mid Win­ter Christ­mas Fes­ti­val will be the place to get a wide range of Christ­mas treats, in­clud­ing home­made mince tarts. The fes­ti­val will fea­ture 15 Christ­mas themed courts cre­ated by mem­bers of the com­mu­nity. For de­tails on these courts, turn to pages 18 and 19. The venue will also be filled with beau­ti­fully dec­o­rated Christ­mas trees.

The event’s or­gan­is­ing com­mit­tee have been busy plan­ning the fes­ti­val, which is a fundraiser for Pohlen Hos­pi­tal and child can­cer, for months. Com­mit­tee mem­bers Shirley Frew and Elaine Young have been just two of those vol­un­teers.

Shirley, who has been in­volved in the cre­ation of the art so­ci­ety and the patch­work group’s courts, said peo­ple have been very will­ing

to help out. ‘‘ We never have any prob­lem get­ting num­bers.’’

Shirley is also cre­at­ing a spe­cial Christ­mas tree – the Cookie Tree – which will fea­ture Christ­mas cook­ies. The cook­ies will also be avail­able for sale.

Elaine said although she’s not arty she felt she could help by run­ning the Christ­mas cafe, which will pro­vide yummy treats for morn­ing or af­ter­noon tea. There will also be a sales ta­ble where visi­tors will be able to buy Christ­mas dec­o­ra­tions, wreaths, Christ­mas knit­ted toys, ta­ble run­ners and wall hang­ings. And there will be a num­ber of raf­fles.

The pair feel the event has cer­tainly snow­balled over the years, with this year be­ing the third time the fes­ti­val has been held.

‘‘I am ut­terly amazed, peo­ple are get­ting more cre­ative,’’ Shirley said, while adding that there is no limit to peo­ple’s imag­i­na­tion.

She said Mike Gaeng from the art so­ci­ety, for ex­am­ple, had made a Christ­mas tree out of pumice and driftwood. ‘‘It’s just amaz­ing,’’ Shirley said. The Mata­mata cre­ative com­mu­nity had cer­tainly em­braced the chal­lenge of be­ing in­volved, Shirley and Elaine both said.

‘‘ It’s a real com­mu­nity ef­fort and there are a lot of peo­ple in­volved,’’ Shirley said.

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