Altrusa’s second major annual event has arrived with Holiday Happenings taking place Dec. 3 in the Eastern New Mexico University Ballroom in the Campus Union Building.
Co-chair for the event, Dannah Brown, said this is the 14th year and tables are sold out each year.
“I think viewing the tables and visiting with other people in the community is what people have enjoyed the most,” Brown said. “A lot of tables are made up of family members, so it’s a holiday tradition for a lot of families. It gets the holiday season started.”
Brown said some tables are sold as a whole to groups and some tables are sold as individual seats.
“It helps with our community support,” Brown said of the money raised. “We help with our youth and our senior citizens, so we’re having an impact on a lot of different people in the community.”
Altrusa holds their Home Tour and Holiday Happening events each year to raise money for community service projects, which are devoted to providing eye glasses to individuals who need them, giving scholarships to ENMU students and more.
Brown said money has also been used in previous years to purchase items for Roosevelt General Hospital, Portales Municipal Schools Library projects and musical instruments for Portales schools.
“Even though this is an Altrusa project, it takes the whole community to make it happen,” Brown said.
Brown said those attending the event will have the opportunity to preview 67 tables decorated with a variety of Christmas themes, such as Christmas is for the Birds, Remember America on Christmas, Candy Cane Lane and Skating in a Winter Wonderland.
She said themes are different each year with none ever having been repeated.
She said some themes from previous years have included Christmas is a Red Letter Day, Christmas Around the World, Santa Claus is Coming to the Ranch and Christmas in the Caribbean.
“My favorite part is looking at the tables and seeing what people come up with every year,” Brown said.
“It’s fascinating how colorful and fun each table is each year,” said Cozetta Moore, an Altrusa member, who helps with decorating and the meal. “Every table’s different and every decorator comes up with new, creative ideas.”
Moore said the event grows slightly each year with this year’s filling 65 tables; two more than last year.
She said many people who come to the event each year.
“I think getting to see the different Christmas decorations is something everyone enjoys,” Moore said. “As you look at the tables, you just get excited about the upcoming holiday season and seeing family and friends together. And being a small town, we all like to see each other.”