2016 “Christmas Forest” Winners Announced

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

1886 Crescent Hotel & Spa Announces

2016 “Christmas Forest” Winners

 

C'mas At Crescent 2016 _ Forest Illumination _ 5x7 _ 300

 

 

(EUREKA SPRINGS, AR) — The 1886 Crescent Hotel & Spa is all about tradition.  One tradition that started in 2008 as part of the 7th Annual Christmas At The Crescent Celebration was the “growing” of the “Christmas Forest”, an effort to raise money for local and area charities.  In the past eight years this forest has harvested $27,002.60 in charitable contributions.

“This town, this region, this state have provided such a wonderful environment for our hotel’s success, it is only right that we, the Crescent and Basin Park Hotels, always give something back.  It is our way of saying, ‘Thank you.’” said Jack Moyer, general manager of both properties.  “It was a win-win proposition.  We had our mountaintop covered in lighted Christmas trees beautifully decorated by local citizens and employees which created a magical setting through which couples and families could stroll and be immersed in the holiday spirit of decoration and giving.  And, it gave those who enjoyed the forest an opportunity to say ‘Merry Christmas’ with donations to a charity whose tree they liked the best.”

“The concept is quite simple,” Moyer explained.  “On or about Thanksgiving each year, we purchase plus have donated, like from our very own Sunfest Grocery Store, around 30 real evergreen trees.  The hotel places them on our property adorning each with lights.  Charities then come in, usually represented in part by one or more of our employees, and decorate their tree as festively as possible.  And what an amazing job they do each year.  The trees are absolutely gorgeous.

“We illuminate the Christmas Forest on the first Saturday night in December.  From that day thru December 31, those who come to the forest and wish to ‘vote’ for their favorite tree do so by dropping in the ‘ballot box’ one dollar for each vote they would like to cast.  On New Year’s Day, the votes are counted.  Each charity gets all of their ‘votes’ plus the Crescent kicks in cash prizes for the top three vote getters, $200, $100, and $50, respectively, and an honorable mention donation of $25 to all of the other charities.  Shortly thereafter the stripped trees are donated to Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge where they become ‘cat toys’ for their big cats.”

Those charities that took top honors this year are OARS (Ozark AIDS Resources & Services) in first place with $1,376 in votes, Arkansas Children’s Hospital in second place with $1,349, and Good Shepherd Humane Society in third place with $178.

“Twenty-six other charities received honorable mention recognition,” said Mary Howze, the hotel’s activities director.  “They include Autism Speaks, Bereaved Parents of USA-NWA Chapter, Berryville Elementary Nurses Program, Camp No Limits, Carroll County Music Group, Christy Davis, Clear Spring School, ECHO (Eureka Christian Health Outreach), Eureka Springs Boy Scouts, Eureka Springs Downtown Network, Eureka Springs School of Arts, Flint Street Food Bank, Food Not Bombs, Greater Eureka Springs Chamber of Commerce, Heifer International, Holiday Island Fire Department, Jeremiah House, Loaves & Fishes, Main Stage, Mercy Hospice-NWA Chapter, Operation Smile, Preservation Society, Project Self Esteem, The Ozarks Chorale, The Purple Flower, and Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge.”

“This was yet another record year for donations,” Moyer concluded.  “With all of the votes added to our additional cash prizes, local and area charities netted a Christmas present of $4,657 which pushed our eight year total to more than $27,000.  Ya see, sometimes money really does grow on trees.”

END

Christmas at the Crescent 2014

______________________________

“Christmas At The Crescent” Has

Become Eureka Springs Tradition

 

Christmastime at this Historic Hotel of America has become one of The Ozarks region’s most popular winter holiday traditions.  Part of that tradition is the 1886 Crescent Hotel and Spa’s weeklong ??????????????????????schedule of activities for visitors, residents and guests which is called “Christmas at the Crescent”.  This year’s yuletide celebration at this mountaintop spa resort runs from December 6 through December 14 here at 75 Prospect Avenue on the Historic Loop.  It is all part of the full, nearly month-long calendar of seasonal events planned here at one of America’s Dozen Distinctive Destinations.

“When we first started this annual event 14 years ago it consisted of a live Nativity scene, wonderful decorations, Santa’s Brunch and free holiday movies for our guests,” said hotel General Manager and Vice-President of Operations Jack Moyer.  “The crowds were small that year but everyone who attended had a great time.  So much so, it encouraged us to expand our holiday decorations at the property and build up events during this week not only for our hotel but to also impact the holiday season for the entire community of Eureka Springs.”

One such community-wide event is the Lighting of the Christmas Forest on Saturday, December 6 at 6 p.m.  More than 30 trees will adorn the holiday focal point of the hotel’s nearly 15 acres, The East Lawn.  Each tree will be uniquely decorated one to the other since each tree represents a different local and area charity.

“Not only is our Christmas Forest a sparkling sight to behold, visitors to the forest can ‘vote’ for their favorite tree.  At the end of the ‘election’ on December 31, each tree’s ‘votes’ will be donated to CHF_8863that charity.  Additionally, the top three vote-getters also receive a nice cash prize donated from the hotel,” explained Moyer.

Santa arrives at the hotel on Sunday, December 7 when he is the star attraction at Santa’s Brunch.  The two elements that guests are suggested to bring to this feast of holiday culinary delights are a large appetite and a camera.  While eating to their hearts’ delight guests also getting a chance to sit on Ol’ Saint Nick’s lap for a chance to capture a photographic lifetime memory.  Santa has been known to balance an entire family on his red velvet knees for that just right shot.  Brunch is served from 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. while Santa will be poised for photo ops from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Each weekday, the hotel’s activity department creates a festive to do, while at noon during this special holiday week, the hotel’s Crystal Ballroom swings open its doors for hungry patrons and school groups ready to perform for those enjoying a mid-day repast.  Bands and choirs from local area middle and high schools present medleys of festive tunes that always bring back happy holiday memories from years gone by.

For those holiday travelers who long to return to the 19th century and the days of Charles Dickens, the Eureka Springs Readers Theater troupe presents a rousing adaptation of “A Christmas Carol” following a Dickensian-themed feast.  This “Holiday Feast with Charles Dickens” is a Tuesday night affair, held December 9th in the hotel’s Crystal Ballroom.  Reservations are recommended since seating is limited.  Dinner is served at 6 p.m. followed by the performance.

Thursday night, December 11th  will utilize that same hotel venue but this time it will be filled with the polished holiday musical stylings of The Ozarks Chorale, a popular vocal ensemble that has CHF_9036performed in New York City’s prestigious Carnegie Hall.  A dinnertime concert entitled “Sounds of the Season” is planned at 6:30 p.m. as the executive chef offers up its special “Tastes of The Holidays” menu accompanied by one of the largest wine cellars in the state.  Reservations are not required.

Christmas at the Crescent concludes with the Spring Street stroll down Eureka Springs’ Promenade from the Crescent Hotel to Crescent Spring and an event ONLY to beheld in 2014 as the Crescent celebrates a “Spirited Wedding Celebration” in the Christmas forest on 12-13-14.

“One great outcropping from our hotel’s annual event has been the evolution of the community pulling together to expand Christmas lighting throughout the town as well as make this week and the days surrounding it a true Christmas festival,” added Moyer.

Under the sponsorship of such organizations as Eureka Springs Downtown Network and the Greater Eureka Springs Chamber of Commerce, such delightful holiday events as the night-time Downtown Christmas Parade, Santa In The Park, Preservation Tour of Homes and festive shopping enhancements make historic Downtown Eureka Springs a winter wonderland.

“The Christmas season has become huge here in Eureka,” Moyer said.  “Starting with Christmas parade Friday December 5th and continuing through Christmas at the Crescent and the Sweet Treats Christmas Tour the first two weeks of December are filled with holiday spirit and events.  So many in fact this two-week celebration is now known as the ‘EurekaSprings.com Christmas Festival’.”

“Our ‘Christmas at The Crescent’ this year will allow our guests to ‘Live The Legend’ here at our hotel, the symbol of Arkansas hospitality since 1886,” concluded Moyer.

For more information on “Christmas at The Crescent”, one should go to ChristmasattheCrescent.com.

 

Eureka Springs Offering “WOW” This Holiday Season

Eureka Springs Offering “WOW!” This Holiday Season

 

Are the gifts you buy for your loved ones every year kind of like a plate full of chocolate chip cookies?  Sweet.  Tasty.  Nice… but nothing “WOW!”  That can all change this year when holiday shoppers 484152_550898464923607_1894183831_nsojourn over to Eureka Springs.  There they will find “WOW” (“Wonderland Of Wonderful”) gifts.  Dozens of eclectic shops and galleries are this Victorian village’s trademark.  Inside these twinkling shops and galleries holiday shoppers will actually find those one-of-a-kind gifts.  The kind of gifts that will have the recipients audibly saying “WOW!” after the wrapping paper has been frenetically ripped away.

When shopping in this Dickensian setting, holiday visitors will find themselves actually smiling, enjoying the execution of this required annual task.  Many will chuckle upon realizing that the humming of a tune about Santa Claus coming to town is escaping from behind their smile   This is the pre-Christmas 12-4-10 069experience being offered unassuming holiday celebrants once they have arrived in Eureka Springs, the authentic holiday town.

“If we hear one thing repeated by those who holiday shop in Eureka Springs is that it is fun and authentic holiday shopping experience,” said Amanda Haley, board member for the Eureka Springs Main Street Program (ESDN).  “What organizations like ESDN, the Greater Eureka Springs Chamber of Commerce, 1886 Crescent Hotel & Spa, and others do is to then work hard to embellish these three magical Christmas shopping weekends with festive, experiential activities and events.

“During these weekends, visiting shoppers might find themselves passing a ‘living window’ or nibbling on a hot S’more while the sounds of Christmas carols surround them in the park.  They can also couple their holiday excitement with a spa-like time of relaxation for what we locals are calling jubilee rejuvenation in one of America’s Distinctive Destinations.”

For those who enjoy the words, “I’m just looking.” there are two special events just for them.  Spectators line the streets early for a good view of The Ozarks’ most festive holiday parade the evening OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAof December 5.  Sponsored by Arvest Bank, this multi-unit spectacle in motion brightly winds its way along Eureka’s historic loop from the Carnegie Library through downtown past Basin Spring Park.  The other “observers only” occasion is the next day on December 6.  The Eureka Springs Preservation Society’s “Holiday Tour of Homes” each year welcomes more than 2,000 sets of eyes to see not only beautiful turn-of-the-century homes but homes gaily decorated.

“Many people can spend one of these three holiday weekends adrift somewhere in a concrete city circling a shopping center or big-box store looking for a parking place only to feel like, once inside, a sardine in a sea of humanity,” noted Haley.  “Here in Eureka our ‘seafood’ is served as an entree, not herded into a never-ending check-out line.

“Visitors complete their Eureka holi-day weekend relaxed, not frazzled, which makes that seafood or steak served in one of our highly-acclaimed, non-chain restaurants even more pleasurable.  Only one thing left to do, travel a block or two and sleep in a bed turned down ‘just for you’ waiting for those dancing sugar plums to appear.”

It is said when you add up all the shops and galleries of downtown, uptown and outlying areas, this nineteenth century Ozark hamlet festooned in its holiday finery, boasts more than 100 retail 481837_550895701590550_1277496998_nbusinesses.  “And none are more than a few steps, a few minutes away one from the others,” Haley explained, “with no fear of getting ‘mall’ed!”

To pluck just one from “the 100” to serve as an example of what shoppers can expect when holiday shopping in Eureka Springs: Iris At Basin Park, located downtown at 8 Spring Street, adjacent to the 1905 Basin Park Hotel.  This typically eclectic Eureka Springs combination art gallery/gift shop features the work of about 150 American artists, many local.  Some of their art is wearable, hangable, has a utility or is just fun to display in that special focal point in a home or office.  A wide variety of items in a full range of prices allow shoppers with any size budget to come away with a treasure to wrap up and place under the tree; guaranteed to produce a “WOW!”

For more information about ways to enjoy Eureka Springs these three special weekends of the holiday season, one should go to Eureka Springs’ shops and galleries, ESDN Christmas Events, Greater Eureka Springs Chamber’s Calendar of Events, Christmas At The Crescent, or simply go to EurekaSprings.com.

 

Christmas at the Crescent

“Christmas At The Crescent” Has Become Eureka Springs Tradition Photo by Purdy Art Co.

 Christmastime at this Historic Hotel of America has become one of The Ozarks region’s most popular winter holiday traditions.  Part of that tradition is the 1886 Crescent Hotel and Spa’s weeklong schedule of activities for visitors, residents and guests which is called “Christmas at the Crescent”.  This year’s yuletide celebration at this mountaintop spa resort runs from December 7 through December 13 here at 75 Prospect Avenue on the Historic Loop.  It is all part of the full, nearly month-long calendar of seasonal events planned here at one of America’s Dozen Distinctive Destinations.

“When we first started this annual event 13 years ago it consisted of a live Nativity scene, Santa’s Brunch and free holiday movies for our guests,” said hotel General Manager and Vice-President of Operations Jack Moyer.  “The crowds were small that year but everyone who attended had a great time.  So much so, it encouraged us to build up this week not only for our hotel but to also impact the holiday season for the entire community of Eureka Springs.”CHF_8859

One such community-wide event is the Christmas Forest Tree Lighting on Saturday, December 7 at 6 p.m.  More than 30 trees will adorn the holiday focal point of the hotel’s nearly 15 acres, The East Lawn.  Each tree will be uniquely decorated one to the other since each tree represents a different local and area charity.

“Not only is our Christmas Forest a sparkling sight to behold, visitors to the forest can ‘vote’ for their favorite tree.  At the end of the ‘election’ on December 31, each tree’s ‘votes’ will be donated to that charity.  Additionally, the top three vote-getters also receive a nice cash prize donated from the hotel,” explained Moyer.

Santa arrives at the hotel on Sunday, December 8 when he is the star attraction at Santa’s Brunch.  The two elements that guests are suggested to DSC_0104bring to this feast of holiday culinary delights are a large appetite and a camera.  While eating to their hearts’ delight guests also getting a chance to sit on Ol’ Saint Nick’s lap for a chance to capture a photographic lifetime memory.  Santa has been known to balance an entire family on his red velvet knees for that just right shot.  Brunch is served from 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. while Santa will be poised for photo ops from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Each weekday at noon during this special holiday week, the hotel’s Crystal Ballroom swings open it doors for hungry patrons and school groups ready to perform DSC_0264 for those enjoying a mid-day repast.  Bands and choirs from local area middle and high schools present medleys of festive tunes that always bring back happy holiday memories from years gone by.

For those holiday travelers who long to return to the 19th century and the days of Charles Dickens, the Eureka Springs Readers Theater troupe presents a rousing Photo by Purdy Art Co.adaptation of “A Christmas Carol” following a Dickensian-themed feast.  This “Holiday Feast with Charles Dickens” is a Tuesday night affair held in the hotel’s Crystal Ballroom.  Reservations are recommended since seating is limited.  Dinner is served at 6 p.m. followed by the performance.

Thursday night will utilize that same hotel venue but this time it will be filled with the polished holiday musical stylings of The Ozarks Chorale, a popular vocal ensemble that has performed in New York City’s prestigious Carnegie Hall.  A dinnertime concert entitled “Sounds of thePhoto by Purdy Art Co. Season” is planned at 6:30 p.m. as the executive chef offers up its special “Tastes of The Holidays” menu accompanied by one of the largest wine cellars in the state.  Reservations are not required.

For those who long to share a laugh or a happy tear with friends and family while watching classic holiday motion pictures, Skybar Gourmet Pizza is where guests will want to congregate.  Each evening of “Christmas at the Crescent”, Sunday through Friday, this popular lounge and eatery transforms itself into a mini-plex for enjoying Christmas cinematic classics.  As a hotel gift to Skybar patrons, there is no admission for this nostalgic trip down memory lane.  The Skybar also provides a bird’s-eye view of the hotel’s Christmas Forest four stories below.

“One great outcropping from our hotel’s annual event has been the evolution of the community pulling together to make this week and the days surrounding it a true Christmas f12-4-10 075-SMALLestival,” added Moyer.

Under the sponsorship of such organizations as Eureka Springs Downtown Network and the Greater Eureka Springs Chamber of Commerce, such delightful holiday events as the night-time downtown Christmas Parade, Santa In The Park, and festive shopping enhancements make historic Downtown Eureka Springs a winter wonderland.

“The Christmas season has become huge here in Eureka,” Moyer said.  “In fact, it has become so big we had to find one umbrella sponsor for promotion of all the holiday events.  Our four-week celebration is now known as the ‘EurekaSprings.com Christmas Festival’.”

“Our ‘Christmas at The Crescent’ this year will allow our guests to ‘Live The Legend’ here at our hotel, the symbol of Arkansas hospitality since 1886,” concluded Moyer.

For more information on “Christmas at The Crescent”, one should go to crescenthotel.com.

 

Crescent Hotel Christmas Forest Winners

1886 Crescent Hotel’s “Christmas Forest” Nets Local Charities $3565

The annual “Christmas Forest” of the 1886 Crescent Hotel and Spa has netted local charities here $3,565 in donations thanks to a combination of one-dollar “votes” and cash prizes.  Twenty-five charities participated with OARS (Ozark AIDS Resource Services) garnering the most “votes”, $588, to become the winning tree for 2012.  Second and third place vote getters were Friends of RoAnna with $475 and Arkansas Children’s Hospital with $332.

A “vote” came in the form of a one-dollar donation placed in a collection “ballot” box that was on-site at the forest.  After visitors walked through the forest during the month of December they were encouraged to write the name of their favorite tree on a little envelope placing their “votes” inside.

Other charities represented in the 2012 forest were American Veterans Association, Autism Speaks, Berryville Elementary Nurses Program, Born This Way, Brighton Ridge Residents’ Activity Fund, Carroll County Literacy Council, Greater Eureka Springs Chamber of Commerce, Clear Spring School, ECHO, Eureka Springs Boy Scouts, Eureka Springs Downtown Network, Flint Street Food Bank, Good Shepherd Humane Society, Heifer International, Loaves & Fishes, Our House, Ozarks Chorale, Project Self-Esteem, St. John’s Hospice, Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge, Womenade, and Wounded Soldiers.

Each year, the Crescent Hotel supplies the trees, the lights and the prize money.  All participants get to keep all of their “votes” plus the top three “vote” getters receive an additional $200 for first prize, $150 for second prize, and $100 for third prize.  The Crescent also awards every non-winning charity a $25 “honorable mention” donation.

“What a wonderful addition to Eureka’s holiday season,” said Mary Howze, hotel activities coordinator, “and a real win-win situation.  Visitors to and residents of Eureka Springs get to see a beautiful garden filled with lavishly decorated holiday trees and local charities receive donations.

“And this year’s forest has another winner, too.  All of our trees, after the lights and decorations were removed, were given to the Table Rock Fish Habitat where they will supply underwater cover for our finny friends.”

Howze concluded by saying, “Our next Christmas Forest will be our eighth.  Each 2013 tree will be decorated and ready for voting following our gala illumination ceremony the first Saturday in December with the ‘polls’ closing again at midnight on New Year’s Eve.”

A Forest of Christmas Trees Glows High Above The Ozarks

(EUREKA SPRINGS, AR) – In one of the highest points in all of the Arkansas Ozarks sits a mountaintop spa resort that was built back in 1886.  The hotel is surrounded by 15 acres of forestland crisscrossed with walking trails and manicured gardens adjacent to the four-story, limestone structure.  It is here in these manicured gardens that every December for the past six years that well-decorated, illuminated Christmas trees seem to spring up.

The 1886 Crescent Hotel and Spa’s “Christmas Forest” is one of the most popular events each year of the hotel’s holiday.  The hotel’s Director of Marketing and Communications Bill Ott explains, “Our Christmas Forest was the idea of our General Manager Jack Moyer six years ago.  It is a concept that started with a dozen trees and in 2011 saw the forest grow to 30.”

The concept is a simple one.  Each tree is decorated by and for a local area charity.  Following a grand forest illumination ceremony, the forest opens to the public.  Then from that evening through New Year’s Eve, visitors to the forest can “vote” for their favorite tree.  Each vote costs one dollar.  At the end of the voting period, the “ballots” are added up.  Each charity’s tree gets to keep all the monetary “votes” each received.  The top three vote-getting charities get to not only keep their “ballots” but The Crescent awards $200, $100, and $50, respectively.

Those charities represented in the 2011 forest are Matter of Trust, Aveda’s Earth, Toys For Tots, Eureka Springs Historical Museum, OARS, Good Shepherd Humane Society, St. John’s Hospice, People Helping People, Heifer International, ECHO, Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge, Ozarks Chorale, Eureka Springs Downtown Network, Eureka Springs Boy Scouts, Eureka Springs Public Schools, Clear Spring School, Eureka Springs Rotary Club, Loaves & Fishes, Preservation Society, Flint Street Food Bank, Farmers’ Market, Greater Eureka Springs Chamber of Commerce, Eureka Springs Hospital, Merlin Foundation, W.T. Fockers, Salvation Army, CASE, Operation Smiles, Cello Choir, and Berryville Elementary Nursing Services.

“We only use real trees.  The hotel purchases the trees, put lights on each and then each individual charity decorates their own tree,” noted Moyer.  “It has become quite a decorating competition between the charities.  Not only do they work hard to make their trees the most beautiful, most unique, but each charity works hard to ‘get the vote out’.”

“Our Christmas Forest has become a community and regional draw during the holidays,” Ott added.  “And with the leaves off the abundant hardwood trees, our illuminated evergreen forest can be seen for miles.”

Eureka Springs, Arkansas, is a resort community located just 53 miles southwest of Branson, MO and 156 miles east of Tulsa, OK.  The 1886 Crescent Hotel and Spa is a member of Historic Hotels of America and will celebrate its 125th anniversary in 2011.

For more information on The Crescent’s “Christmas Forest”, one should contact the hotel’s Administrative Marketing Assistant Amanda Haley at <amanda.haley1@gmail.com>.