The holidays are a fun time to visit downtown Fort Wayne—there is so much to do and see. And at the center of it all is the Embassy Theatre’s Annual Festival of Trees, a highly anticipated Fort Wayne holiday tradition, which kicks off November 27 and runs through December 4. For eight days, the lobbies of the Embassy Theatre and Indiana Hotel are transformed into a beautifully decorated holiday wonderland.
Each year, individuals, corporations, and groups support the Embassy by sponsoring trees and decorating them for the event. Barb Richards, Marketing Director at the Embassy, is excited for this year’s Festival of Trees. “The creativity displayed by our community through the design of these trees is outstanding,” she says.
But the festival, which boasts over 50 trees this year, is about more than trees. It also includes the Holiday Wall of Wreaths, animated window displays, and Santa Land where kids may visit with Santa and enjoy a scoop of Edy’s peppermint ice cream.
“I can’t wait to reveal the animated window displays,” Barb says. “This is the fifth year for the windows, which are a nod to Wolf & Dessauer whose windows served as the center of the holidays in downtown Fort Wayne throughout the early and mid 1900s.”
With the help of dedicated volunteers, the Embassy brings this holiday tradition back for a new generation. The displays will be unveiled during the Night of Lights in the windows at the corner of Jefferson and Harrison.
Speaking of a new generation, there is a lot for the kids to do at Festival of Trees. On November 27, A Party Apart will host “Winter Carnival” on the Embassy stage, so if you’re downtown for the Night of Lights, stop by the Embassy for some bouncy house fun for the kids. Of course, Santa Land has already been mentioned, and November 29 through December 1, the stage will come alive with youth performances—with regional dance and singing groups entertaining Festival guests.
If you haven’t visit the annual Festival of Trees before, make a point to do so this year and establish a new family tradition. It really is a magical event. Tickets are available through Ticketmaster or the Embassy box office.
Wed., Nov. 27, 6-9 p.m.
Thurs., Nov. 28, 4-8 p.m., featuring Grande Page Organ music
Fri.-Sun., Nov. 29- Dec. 1, 12-8 p.m., featuring youth entertainment on the Embassy stage
Senior Day, Mon., Dec. 2, 9 a.m.-1 p.m.
Tues., Dec. 3, 9 a.m.-1 p.m.
Tots and Trees Wed., Dec. 4, 9 a.m.-1 p.m., featuring special activities for kids
For more information on the Festival or Trees, or any of the other great Night of Lights and HolidayFest activities going on around Fort Wayne, check out Visit Fort Wayne!
Amber Foster Bouthot moved here from Illinois in 2002 and is proud to call Fort Wayne home. She's an editor, freelance writer, and community volunteer, with over ten years of writing and editing experience. By day, she manages glo magazine, owns her own marketing and writing firm, and runs Fort Wayne Food Tours. In her spare time, she likes to cuddle with her daughters and 3 pups, and spend time camping and going to the lake with her family.