To The Editor:

O tannenbaum, o tannenbaum, how lovely was our evening. Many gathered this past Thursday for the Tannenbaum event that was held at The Homestead at Hickory View in Washington.

Over 240 decorated holiday items were donated by individuals and businesses and on display at The Homestead. Many volunteers worked together to ensure a very successful evening in raising funds for the Friends of Emmaus organization. The Friends of Emmaus is a nonprofit organization which supports the residents and staff at Emmaus Homes in Marthasville. The goal of the Tannenbaum event this year was to raise funds toward the purchase of two accessible vans which will be used at the Marthasville campus.

On behalf of our organization I want to thank the residents and staff of The Homestead for opening their home for this event. Too numerous to mention are all the volunteers, businesses and individuals who donated decorated items, food and beverage. You are greatly appreciated. A special thanks to all businesses, newspapers, churches, radio stations who helped to spread the word about the event and invited the public to participate. Our appreciation to Curt Dennison for the photos on the website which invited the public to bid on the donated items. Thanks to Jeanne of The Missourian who captured many moments with her camera especially photos of the Traveling Tannenbaum Trees which shared the Tannenbaum spirit with their every appearance.

It was very special to have two corporate sponsors for our event this year. We are grateful for the contributions of Mercy and Wealth Consultants, Matthew L. Westhoff, CFP.

We appreciate the generosity of so many people who placed their bids on the displayed items and came to enjoy the evening with Elvis and participate in the final hours of the auction. Special thanks to Dunker Auction for its help with the oral auction and Ginny Brinker for serving as master of ceremonies for the evening.

Again we were fortunate and thankful to have the support of Emmaus staff and residents. The “special ceramic tree awards” for winners of different categories of decorated items were made by staff and residents on the Marthasville campus.

We are very appreciative of the efforts of Gayle Hachman, chairperson of the Tannenbaum event; Katie Geisert, executive director of The Homestead at Hickory View; and Barb Hellmann, sales manager at The Homestead. Their untiring efforts and leadership encouraged everyone to work together for a successful event.