Renfrew Victoria Hospital’s Tree of Lights Celebration goes back to its roots

December 08, 2022

 Sandra Beimers pushes button to light tree

Sandra Beimers pushes the button to light up the Tree of Lights.


The RVH Foundation’s Tree of Lights event took place on Friday December 2 on the hospital grounds after many years of being held downtown.

Patti Dillabough, RVH Foundation Executive Director, noted that the move back to the hospital has been wonderful for the patients. “They were able to watch us getting set up, and watch the businesses come to decorate and light their trees, so it’s been really exciting for them. And some of them will be watching us tonight from upstairs.”

Amidst the beautifully decorated Healing Garden, those who attended could listen to carols sung by the Dickens Carolers Ottawa, enjoy refreshments provided by Chris and Tanya’s No Frills, J&J Chocolates, RVH Dietary, and Patti Watters of the RVH Foundation, have their photo taken with Santa in the gazebo, or stroll through the ‘festival of trees.’

Melanie Clemmer, RVHF Development Coordinator, noted that an event like this only cones together with the support of many hands. In addition to the event sponsors, Mack Mackenzie Motors and Hollow Point Ranch and Sugar Bush, she thanked local businesses and organizations who participated in the new festival of trees display: Renfrew Metro, Pathways, Renfrew Printing, Castle (Renfrew and Burnstown), Pick-It Fence, Classic Beauty, J&J Chocolates, ontrac Renfrew, myFM, The Beauty Corner, Childhood Cancer Awareness, the Chamber of Commerce, Chris and Tanya’s No Frills, The Flower Factory, Sweet Tooths, Canadian Tire, and Dominos Renfrew for helping to spread the holiday cheer.

The RVH Foundation also gave special thanks to Renders Tree Farm, Jill Alexander, the 2022 Artist of the Year who created this year’s RVHF Christmas card, the RVH Maintenance crew, Donna Barr, Depth of Field Photography and Kate Crozier for assisting her, as well as Santa and Mrs. Claus for finding the time to stop by.

Every year, someone special is chosen to light the tree, explained Dillabough. “This year, our fundraising goal was to provide the funds for the new Tomosynthesis mammography machine. This mammogram is now in place and taking patients. We thought it only fitting to choose a very special person to light our tree this evening… she not only is a breast cancer survivor and has used our mammography department, she also works at RVH – Sandra Beimers.”

Dillabough also thanked everyone who purchased a Light of Love in Memory or In Honour of someone. This year, folks were able to see those names identified on special ornaments hung on the Tree of Lights. “It is our tree of love,” Dillabough stated. Lights of Love can still be purchased through the Foundation and ornaments will continue to be displayed on the tree until after the holidays.

Marg Tubman, RVH Board Chair, and Julia Boudreau, RVH CEO were on hand to welcome everyone to the event. Boudreau thanked the RVH Foundation crew for making the RVH grounds look amazing and the community for their donations which fund equipment purchases that allow for quality care close to home. “Thanks to everyone, to the entire community not only for your support tonight, but throughout the entire year.”

The public is invited to view the Festival of Trees and the Tree of Lights in the Healing Garden at RVH until after the holidays. Feel free to drive through (take a ticket to access the parking area and drive in. Use the same ticket to exit within a 20-minute window free of charge) and enjoy the spirit of the season through the RVH Foundation’s Tree of Lights!