The Festival of Trees gets ready to kick off in McCormick

McCormick County

McCORMICK, S.C. (WJBF) – The Grist Mill at the Dorn Complex in McCormick, South Carolina is holding its 7th annual “Festival of Trees,” a fundraising event held to keep up the maintenance on the historic building. The Grist Mill is transformed in to a Winter Wonderland where you’ll find Christmas vignettes, trees, ornaments and a lot of history.

“You’re going to see everything from inspirations of ‘Alice in Wonderland’ for children, fairies and elves for young people. History is a huge part of this event. You’re going to learn about the early layout of the towns, you’ll learn about the railroad towns in this area in McCormick County and I just think you will be inspired by the creativeness and the diversity of the themes we’ve chosen this year,” said Mary Tobin a design volunteer.

The Mill was built in 1898 and is one of the last two buildings of its kind left in the country with most of its primary equipment intact and was driven by steam power rather than adjacent water power. The volunteers who make the “Festival of Trees” possible tell me that with all of the history packed in to this building, it’s important for people to come out and see it.

“You know it’s been said that history is to a town what a memory is to a person; and if you lose your memory, life is not as rich as it could be,” said Linda Baker another design volunteer.

“History helps us see the future by looking back to where we’ve been. It gives us an appreciation of all the people who came before us and their achievements and I think it helps us today really appreciate the benefits of all the work the people did in the area where we live prior to our coming to live here,” said Tobin.

The “Festival of Trees” is a free event taking place the first two weekends in December. It kicks off this Friday, December 4th from 12 p.m. to 7 p.m.

“I would say it’s probably the most beautiful vignettes and decorating of an old building that you will find anywhere in our area within a hundred miles. We are having people come from Augusta, Greenville, Greenwood, Abbyville…and so the word is out,” said Baker.


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