Penola Coonawarra unveils TREE-mendous Christmas initiative

By Deb Redman, Riddoch Business and Community Association

The festive season in Penola Coonawarra has taken on a sustainable twist this year with the launch of the Trash to TREE-mendous Community Christmas Exhibition. In a bid to foster creativity, community engagement, and draw visitors to the region, businesses and individuals have been invited to showcase their ingenuity by crafting unique Christmas trees from everyday odds and ends.

The annual Community Christmas Exhibition, a cornerstone event celebrated in Penola and Coonawarra attracts hundreds of visitors to the area. This year, the focus shifts from the traditional Stuffed Santa’s to the eco-conscious and inventive Trash to TREE-mendous theme. Creative finds have included dripper irrigation, old wood, wine barrel corks, bikes and gates.

“This initiative is more than just a creative display; it’s a catalyst for community unity,” remarked Riddoch Business and Community Association (RBCA) committee member, Deb Redman. “We’re thrilled to witness the incredible talent and imagination of our community members as they transform discarded items into stunning festive trees. Those that have already been displayed are phenomenal!”

Beyond fostering creativity, Trash to TREE-mendous plays a pivotal role in promoting local tourism and supporting the region’s economy. By inviting individuals to visit the Penola Coonawarra region and witness the imaginative displays, the initiative aims to encourage increased expenditure within the area. Visitors are encouraged to explore, peruse unique shops, indulge in our local food and wine scene, and revel in the TREE-mendous trees on display.

“This initiative will not only continue to showcase the artistic prowess of our community but drive economic growth,” Deb Redman added.

Those who wish to take part in the event can upload a photo of their entry to penolacoonawarra.com for consideration in the highly contested People’s Choice award, announced at the annual free Penola Christmas Street Party taking place on Friday, December 15 at Memorial Park, Penola between 5.30-8.30pm. All are welcome to attend.

Many of the trees on display are available for viewing along the Riddoch Highway with the penolacoonawarra.com website highlighting all, along with the locations.

The Trash to TREE-mendous event is a celebration of resourcefulness and community spirit. It is an opportunity for locals and visitors alike to experience the magic of the festive season while supporting the community.

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