Christmas Forest exhibit opens Dec 1 at Cookeville History Museum

COOKEVILLE — The first day of December will be a celebration of Christmas trees in Cookeville.

Cookeville History Museum will open its 6th annual Christmas Forest exhibit — the largest to date with 18 trees — from 4-6 p.m., just prior to the 7th annual Christmas Tree-Lighting and Celebration Service, which starts at 6 p.m. at Dogwood Park, next to the museum.

“We will have candy canes for children and chances to win gift cards from Cream City Ice Cream,” Pam Philpot, Cookeville museums exhibit specialist, said.

“It will be a great thing to do before the tree-lighting ceremony.”

The Christmas Forest is an exhibit of trees decorated by local non-profit clubs and civic organizations, including new exhibitors Tech Trep, Junior Fair Board and Cookeville Leisure Services. Returning favorites are Tennessee State Button Society, Cookeville Camera Club, Cookeville Art Studio and Gallery, Daughters of the American Revolution, Putnam County Fair Board, Tennessee Tech Archives, Philanthropic Educational Organization, Family Community Education Clubs, Embroiderers’ Guild of America Iris Chapter, Friends of White Plains, Cookeville Crazy Quilters, Friends of the Cookeville Depot Museum, Friends of the Cookeville History Museum, Imagination Library and Putnam County Master Gardeners.

The trees, which tell the unique stories of each organization and spread awareness of their missions, are sprouting in every corner of the museum, from the front gallery to the permanent exhibits in back.

Christmas Forest opens Dec. 1 at history museum before Dogwood Park tree-lighting Members of the Tennessee State Button Society decorate their tree for the Cookeville History Museum’s Christmas Forest exhibit, which opens Dec. 1 from 4-6 p.m., just before the annual tree-lighting ceremony at Dogwood Park.

“It is wonderful to see all the groups promote their organizations in festive ways,” Philpot said. “They have so much fun decorating their trees. I think the time, effort and love that is given by these people to this exhibit makes it so special.”

Visitors will see a wide range of styles, from traditional and elegant to fun and whimsical.

“It is always fun to see how the different groups depict their organizations with their trees,” Philpot said. “For instance, the Imagination Library tree is usually covered in children’s books and has a life-size cutout of Dolly Parton. It is always a visitor favorite.”

Other trees feature handmade ornaments, tinsel and bright lights, natural elements, old photos, tiny paintings, embroidered items and more.

The Christmas Forest exhibit continues through Jan. 4. Admission is free.

Cookeville History Museum is open Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m.-4 p.m., at 40 E. Broad St. For more information, call 520-5455.

Members of the Tennessee State Button Society decorate their tree for the
Cookeville History Museum’s Christmas Forest exhibit, which opens Dec. 1
from 4-6 p.m., just before the annual tree-lighting ceremony at Dogwood Park.

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