Annual Festival of Trees Luncheon and Fashion Show Fundraiser

(Courtesy of Orinda Woman’s Club)
Orinda Woman's Club member, Karen Norris, arranges a tabletop tree raffled off in last year's Festival of Trees.

    Once again, the Orinda Woman’s Club will sponsor a day to enjoy friends, food and fundraising fun. The 36th annual Festival of Trees Luncheon and Fashion Show is set for Thursday, Nov. 17, from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. at the San Ramon Marriott Hotel.
    Seating is limited and early reservations encouraged, according to Club President Jean Barnhart. This is the Orinda Woman’s Club’s annual major fundraising event. Dan Ashley, co-anchor of Channel 7 News, returns as Master of Ceremonies.
    In addition to the luncheon and fashion show, there will be a silent auction, destination drawing and raffles for beautiful gift baskets, tabletop trees and wreaths.
    Familia Unidas is a major beneficiary of this year’s event. Located in Richmond, Familias Unidas works with a diverse population in West Contra Costa County. The organization deals with the problems of employment, homelessness, hunger and mental health. Funds generated from Festival of Trees will get focused on youth and mental health issues. Familia Unidas methods aim to empower individuals and connect them to relevant resources.
    The Orinda Woman’s Club Community Service Committee also benefits from this year’s fundraiser. Proceeds will allow the committee to fund educational grants and donate to local organizations that address needs of the most vulnerable people in our community.
    Past recipients of funding from the Orinda Woman’s Club include CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocate) of Contra Costa County, Holden High School in Orinda, Infant Mental Health Program in Richmond, Project Second Chance of Contra Costa County and Seniors Around Town in Orinda, to name a few.
    Back by popular demand, this year’s fashion show will feature “runway style” modeling, according to club member and Fashion House Chair Patti Camras.
    J. Jill, Chicos and J. McLaughlin will provide trending winter and holiday attire.
    “We’re excited about showcasing casual fashions in a friendly atmosphere,” said Camras.
    Models will include members of the Orinda Woman’s Club and local women such as former Orinda City Councilwoman and Mayor, Victoria Smith and Cindy Powell of The Orinda Association.
    “It’s fun knowing our friends and neighbors are, once again, the super models this year,” added Camras.
    Dozens of themed and decorated tabletop Christmas trees, lavish baskets filled with treasures and festive wreaths will be raffled to winning ticket purchasers.
    In previous years, the tabletop trees featured a “Gold and Silver” money tree, a “Peppermint Palooza” and a “Winter Wonderland.” Raffle baskets last year included “A Day at the Claremont Spa” and “Chardonnay Lover’s Dream.”
    Silent auction items from past Festival of Trees events featured gift certificates to local restaurants Trader Vic’s, Postino and TuTu’s, a Tiffany decanter and a Big Game ticket package. Last year over 60 silent auction items were available. Auction items allow participants to indulge themselves or treat a friend to something special.
    To purchase tickets online, visit For more information, call Janet Nelson at 925.451.0559 or Barbara Corsi at 925.788.7589. Tickets are $95 per person (general parking is included). Donations are welcome and can be made via the online reservation form.

Barbara Corsi can be reached at

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