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Festival of Trees Decorators

Anyone Can Participate And All Are Welcome

We encourage creative individuals, groups, and organizations to decorate a tree for the Gamble Garden Festival of Trees

You may donate and decorate either a tabletop tree of up to 2′ or a small tree 2′ – 4′ tall.

Decorators are responsible for providing the tree, lights, decorations, and display materials for their tree.

Decorated trees will be available for purchase by silent auction with proceeds supporting Gamble Garden.

A few generous donors have contributed funds to purchase trees. If you would like to be tree sponsor or to receive a tree donated by a Gamble Garden tree sponsor, please indicate on the form.


decorators' Guidelines

  • Trees must be decorated to be viewed from all sides
  • Trees may be decorated on-site beginning at 9am Wednesday, December 2
  • All trees should be decorated and in place by 12 pm Thursday, December 3, for photos.
  • Artificial trees are permitted.
  • Live trees are permitted provided that they have the root ball attached in a water-proof container to protect the floor and kept watered throughout the festival. 
  • Each tree will be provided with one electrical outlet.
  • Please do not use food items on or under the tree.
  • New LED lighting only.
  • Decorations may include gift certificates that can be factored into the value.
  • Trees may be moved during the event. Please ensure your decorations are secure to the tree.
  • The use of business names and logos is not permitted. The Festival of Trees Committee reserves the right to exclude any offending or purely commercial exhibit. 
  • The promotion and sale of tobacco are not permitted. 
  • The Festival of Trees committee reserves the right to impose additional rules and regulations applicable to all exhibits. Upon notification, decorators will be responsible for making changes deemed necessary by the committee staff for safety and quality assurance purposes.
  • To be included in the program, please complete and return the Designer Agreement, no later than November 15, 2020

Tree Value

All trees and all decorations, lights, and items on and under the tree become the property of Gamble Garden.

When you complete the Decorators’ Agreement, you will be asked to include your costs for all items. That will help Gamble determine the fair market value, the opening bid and the closeout price of the tree.

Tree Theme

Each tree should have a cohesive theme with decorations, color, concept. The tree’s theme should be submitted to Gamble Garden by November 15.

Need help getting started? Take a look at our theme ideas below. A theme marked with 2020 indicates that a registered decorator is using that theme.

  • “For the Birds” tree with edible items for birds (2020)
  • Ski-themed
  • Coastal/Christmas at the Seashore
  • Stanford
  • Legos
  • Trains
  • Golden State Warriors
  • 49ers
  • San Jose Sharks
  • Collection of vintage ornaments
  • Charlie Brown Christmas Tree
  • Swedish (2020)
  • Citrus
  • Red, White, and Blue
  • California themed 
  • Hawaii themed
  • Southwestern themed
  • Jingle Bells
  • White Christmas
  • Winter Forest
  • Hearts
  • Love
  • Hope
  • Stars
  • Milkway
  • Riddles
  • Haikus, poetry theme
  • The Grinch
  • Puppies & Kittens
  • Mittens
  • Artist themed such as Monet, Norman Rockwell, O’Keeffe
  • Teas
  • Dreams
  • Wishes
  • Wands/Magic (2020)
  • It’s a Wonderful Life
  • Miracle on 34th Street
  • Gingerbread (2020)
  • Fairies & Fairy houses
  • Reindeers
  • 12 Nights of Christmas
  • Cocktail Time
  • Flower Garden
  • Kitchen Treasures
  • Scrooge
  • Music notes/themed
  • Elf on the shelf
  • Sports of all types
  • Old-Fashioned Allure
  • All Santa Claus
  • All kinds of snowflakes
  • book themed
  • All animal theme
  • Nativity themed
  • Angels
  • Chocolate
  • Peppermint or candy cane
  • Winter floral
  • Holiday spice (clever with cinnamon sticks, cloves, other sachets of spices?)
  • Nutcracker

Ready to Begin...

Complete the form below and download the Decorator's Agreement

  • Please let us know if you have a theme in mind so that we can encourage other decorators not to use that theme. You are not committed to keeping this theme.



Tree Decorator FAQs

  • Question: Do I need to have any experience, background, etc to be a tree decorator?

No, anyone can be a tree decorator. We only ask that you follow the guidelines above

  • Question: How will the tree be auctioned?

We are using Auctria to run the auction completely online. Bidders will place bids via their phone on by computer, remotely. Bidders do not need to be present to bid.

  • Question: Do I need to be present during the event?

No, we welcome you to attend but you do not need to be present at any time during the event. Your tree can be dropped off completed as early as Wednesday, December 2.