The Embassy Hosts the 36th Annual Festival of Trees in a Socially Responsible Way to Bring Comfort and Joy to the Community

 

Tickets on sale November 2

Fort Wayne, Ind. (Oct. 26, 2020) – The Festival of Trees is one of the region’s most anticipated holiday traditions, and the Embassy Theatre is excited to formally announce that it will continue to host the 36th annual Festival of Trees from Wednesday, Nov. 25, through Wednesday, Dec. 2, with expanded hours.

Founded in 1984, the Festival of Trees supports ongoing operational and restoration efforts for the Embassy Theatre Foundation. The festival is the organization’s largest annual fundraising event.

Lobbies of the Embassy Theatre and Indiana Hotel will be transformed into a wonderland of decorated trees under the theme of Comfort and Joy. Patrons will tour the theater and hotel on the first floor ONLY this year with a designated traffic pattern incorporating social distancing as they view more than 40 decorated trees. Admission includes a virtual visit with Santa and festive entertainment on the stage, including performances featuring the Grande Page Pipe Organ as well as community music and dance groups.

Breakfast with Santa is a popular featured event at the festival. Capacity for this event has been greatly reduced to align with current protocols. Cost for the breakfast is $30 per person (reservation required, very limited seating); tickets go on sale for both the Festival of Trees and Breakfast with Santa on Monday, Nov. 2. Please note that the Embassy will offer additional Santa experiences in December for those who cannot attend during the festival. A future news release will provide details.

The Festival of Trees will look and feel different, and the magic and joy it brings to families and friends will remain. The Embassy team has been working for months on plans to adapt the iconic holiday event while keeping a keen eye on Indiana’s Back on Track plan. The Embassy is following board of health guidelines for patrons, staff, volunteers and performers. Masks are required and thorough COVID-19 protocols must be followed for admittance.

COVID-19 Considerations for the Festival of Trees

Timed Entry Ticketing for Stage Activities: To ensure the number of patrons at the festival remains within capacities approved by the Allen County Health Department, a limited number of tickets will be sold in 90-minute time blocks.

Cleaning the Building: Between each 90-minute time block there will be rigorous cleaning of frequently touched surfaces, restrooms, theater seats and the stage area.

Virtual Santa: Santa Claus has been snowed in at the North Pole this year! He is still joining the festival virtually, and families will be able to see and talk to him and take a picture with Santa in Santa Land.

One-way Traffic: All walking traffic patterns will be one way. The trees will be positioned to facilitate this pattern.

Online Program: The Festival of Trees program booklet will be available online this year to create a touchless experience. The Embassy encourages patrons to access this guide through their phone or device. Voting for favorite trees and entries for raffles will also be online this year.

Virtual Festival of Trees: For those unable to attend the Festival of Trees, a video tour will be available as a ticketing option so that viewers can enjoy the festival from the comfort of their home. The virtual ticket will be for sale on Nov. 25 and the online tour will be available for viewing Dec. 3, 2020 through Jan. 1, 2021.

Individuals 65 years of age and older or those in high-risk categories are encouraged to not attend the event. Patrons are asked to assess their health before arriving and stay home if ill or experiencing symptoms of COVID-19. Any patrons who arrive at the Embassy ill or displaying symptoms of COVID-19 will be sent home. While the Embassy works hard to reduce exposure to COVID-19, the public is assuming the inherent risk of possible exposure.

The Embassy encourages patrons to visit fwembassytheatre.org for a complete lineup of Festival of Trees activities, which is also detailed below. The online schedule will be the most up-to-date source of information.

Tickets:

  • $10/adult (13+ years)
  • $5/youth ages 1-12
  • Children under 1 year old are free (ticket required)
  • $25 Virtual Tour (video available Dec. 3)

Tickets will be available for purchase Monday, Nov. 2 at the STAR Bank box office at the Embassy Theatre (260.424.5665), fwembassytheatre.org as well as ticketmaster.com.

Notes on ticketing:

  • Trees Only Ticket: Patron will have access to the trees and virtual Santa Land.
  • Trees and Performance Ticket: Will have assigned seat for performance within the 90-minute time block and have access to the trees and virtual Santa Land.
  • Virtual Tour: A link will be emailed to virtual ticket buyers to share the video tour of the trees. The provided link will be active through Jan. 1 and can be played an unlimited amount of times.

Visit the Embassy Theatre, 125 W. Jefferson Blvd. in downtown Fort Wayne.

2020 Festival of Trees Hours and Schedule of Events

 

Wednesday, Nov. 25 (OPEN TO PUBLIC: 6-9:30 p.m.)
  • 36th Annual Festival of Trees Opening Day
  • Debut of animated holiday windows (located on Harrison St. side of the theater)
  • Virtual visit with Santa Claus in Santa Land
  • 6-7:30 p.m. – Fort Wayne Children’s Choir
Thursday, Nov. 26 (OPEN TO PUBLIC: 2-9:30 p.m.)
  • Enjoy the Festival after Thanksgiving lunch or dinner, a special treat for out-of-town guests
  • Virtual visit with Santa Claus in Santa Land
  • 4-5:30 p.m. – Grande Page Pipe Organ featuring Cletus Goens
  • See Irving Berlin’s holiday classic screening of “White Christmas” at 6:30 p.m.
Friday, Nov. 27 (OPEN TO PUBLIC: 11 a.m.-8:30 p.m.)
  • 8-10:45 a.m.: Breakfast with Santa – Join Santa for breakfast at the Embassy during the Festival of Trees. Separate event ticket required ($30 per person). Includes a private tour of the festival before it opens to the public and then Breakfast with Santa programming to begin around 9 a.m. Local food vendor featured as well as an engaging holiday performance from the Fort Wayne Youtheatre. Patrons should enter through theater lobby. Seating is very limited.
  • 11 a.m.-8:30 p.m.: Festival continues. Virtual visit with Santa Claus in Santa Land.
  • Entertainment:
    • 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Ellie Paige Dance Academy
    • 1-2:30 p.m. Grande Page Pipe Organ: Parker Maas
    • 3-4:30 p.m. Monique’s Studio of Dance
    • 5-6:30 p.m. Amaneceres de Mexico Dance
    • 7-8:30 p.m. SheKriStyle Dance Academy
Saturday, Nov. 28 (OPEN TO PUBLIC: 11 a.m.-8:30 p.m.)
  • 8-10:45 a.m.: Breakfast with Santa – Join Santa for breakfast at the Embassy during the Festival of Trees. Separate event ticket required ($30 per person). Includes a private tour of the festival before it opens to the public and then Breakfast with Santa programming to begin around 9 a.m. Local food vendor featured as well as an engaging holiday performance from the Fort Wayne Youtheatre. Patrons should enter through theater lobby. Seating is very limited.
  • 11 a.m.-8:30 p.m.: Festival continues. Virtual visit with Santa Claus in Santa Land.
  • Entertainment:
    • 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Dyson Dance Studio
    • 1-2:30 p.m. En Croix Ballet
    • 3-4:30 p.m. Julie’s School of Dance
    • 5-6:30 p.m. Ratio Dance
    • 7-8:30 p.m. Tiffany & Co. Studio of Dance
Sunday, Nov. 29 (OPEN TO PUBLIC: 11 a.m.-8:30 p.m.)
  • 8-10:45 a.m.: Breakfast with Santa – Join Santa for breakfast at the Embassy during the Festival of Trees. Separate event ticket required ($30 per person). Includes a private tour of the festival before it opens to the public and then Breakfast with Santa programming to begin around 9 a.m. Local food vendor featured as well as an engaging holiday performance from the Fort Wayne Youtheatre. Patrons should enter through theater lobby. Seating is very limited.
  • 11 a.m.-8:30 p.m.: Festival continues. Virtual visit with Santa Claus in Santa Land.
  • Entertainment:
    • 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Starz Dance Academy
    • 1-2:30 p.m. Icon Dance Center
    • 3-4:30 p.m. Grande Page Pipe Organ: Trebor Trahin
    • 5-6:30 p.m. Northeast School of Dance
    • 7-8:30 p.m. Fort Wayne Dance Collective
Monday, Nov. 30 (OPEN TO PUBLIC: 9 a.m.-8:30 p.m.)
  • 9 a.m.-8:30 p.m.: Festival continues. Virtual visit with Santa Claus in Santa Land.
  • Entertainment:
    • 1-2:30 p.m. Grande Page Pipe Organ: Trebor Trahin
    • 3-4:30 p.m. Grande Page Pipe Organ: Parker Maas
    • 5-6:30 p.m. Grande Page Pipe Organ: Cletus Goens
    • 7-8:30 p.m. Gymnastics in Motion
Tuesday, Dec. 1 (OPEN TO PUBLIC: 9 a.m.-8:30 p.m.)
  • 9 a.m.-8:30 p.m.: Festival continues. Virtual visit with Santa Claus in Santa Land.
  • Entertainment:
    • 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Grande Page Pipe Organ: Trebor Trahin
    • 1-2:30 p.m. Canterbury Middle School Chamber Choir
    • 3-4:30 p.m. Purdue Fort Wayne Jazz Quartet
    • 5-6:30 p.m. Beacons of Light Dance Studio
    • 7-8:30 p.m. Beacons of Light Dance Studio
Wednesday, Dec. 2 (OPEN TO PUBLIC: 9 a.m.-8:30 p.m.)
  • 9 a.m.-8:30 p.m.: Festival’s FINAL DAY. Virtual visit with Santa Claus in Santa Land.
  • Entertainment:
    • 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Grande Page Pipe Organ: Trebor Trahin
    • 1-2:30 p.m. Grande Page Pipe Organ: Parker Maas
    • 3-4:30 p.m. Grande Page Pipe Organ: Cletus Goens
    • 5-6:30 p.m. Purdue Fort Wayne Saxophone Quartet
    • 7-8:30 p.m. Dance NY Style

The 2020 Festival Trees is made possible by support from Fort Wayne Metals, Indiana Michigan Power, Chuck & Lisa Surack and Sweetwater, and SDI.

Activities at the Embassy are made possible in part by Arts United of Greater Fort Wayne and the Indiana Arts Commission, which receives support from the State of Indiana and the National Endowment for the Arts.

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