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Date Published Author
12/27/2019 12:00:00 AM   

New holiday event brings cheer and fun to Downtown Fairbanks

The Fairbanks North Star Borough Parks and Recreation Department and the Downtown Association of Fairbanks launched a new event this past December, the Winter Lights Walk. Local businesses and organizations sponsored trees along a 1km trail and decorated them to create a winter wonderland for the community to enjoy. The event was held at Morris Thompson Cultural & Visitors Center and along the trail in Griffin Park on Friday, December 6th.

The Winter Lights Walk was created not only as a recreational opportunity, but also as a fundraiser for local charities that support those who may need extra support during the holiday season. Those who attended the event voted on the best decorated tree and brought canned food items to donate to the Fairbanks Community Food Bank and/or a new unwrapped toy to donate to local Toys for Tots efforts. The business crowned “best decorated tree” selected a charity of their choice to donate 100% of the event proceeds to.

On behalf of the Fairbanks North Star Borough Parks and Recreation Department and the Downtown Association of Fairbanks, a special thank you goes out to all 2019 tree sponsors: Kinney Engineering, Raven’s Landing, Stantec, American Society of Landscape Architects, iHeart Radio, Westmark Fairbanks Hotel & Convention Center, the Fairbanks Disc Golf Association, Bettisworth North, and Morris Thompson Cultural and Visitor Center. Thank you for bringing cheer and fun to Griffin Park and Downtown Fairbanks!

The tree decorating competition was a nail biter, with a mere six votes separating first and second place. Raven’s Landing was voted by the public as the best decorated tree and chose Santa’s Helpers to donate the $3,569 raised from the event. Congratulations to Raven’s Landing! The American Society of Landscape Architects’ tree was voted second best and rounding out the podium in third place was the Fairbanks Disc Golf Association tree.

With the community’s generous support, a Subaru trunk full of food was donated to the Fairbanks Community Food Bank and a half of a refrigerator box of toys was donated for the Marine Corps’ Toys for Tots program. Even with the 20-below-zero temperature on the night of the event, an estimated 800 people came through the doors and explored the trail.

Thank you to a generous sponsorship from Foundation Health Partners, who sponsored a meet and greet with reindeer from Running Reindeer Ranch and Elsa and Anna. An additional thank you to the Tanana Chiefs Conference & Morris Thompson Cultural & Visitor’s Center for supporting the Winter Lights Walk.

Start planning those tree decorations for next year!