Righteous wreaths make decorating, giving, indulging a cinch for holidays


Esther Buesing of The LOFT, left, and Elana Skrobot of Blue Jasmine Boutique hold up wreaths that will be available during the Thanks & Giving Stroll silent auction that will be conducted until Dec. 11.

Viera Voice Betterley Photographic


Decorate a front door royally, indulge a loved one with a gift certificate, plus get into the holiday spirit and also provide funds for a worthy charity at The Avenue Viera.

Merchants have decorated some righteous-looking wreaths that will be sold to the highest bidder to benefit St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. All of the wreaths include some serious treats, such as $100 gift certificates or high-end products, from the participating stores.

From 5 to 8 p.m. Dec. 8, shoppers can enjoy the Thanks & Giving Stroll to check out the available wreaths and partake of holiday cheer as merchants put out the red carpet with plenty of treats.

“We’ll have hot chocolate at our store,” said Esther Buesing, manager of The LOFT.

Buesing helped to launch the wreath project three years ago as part of The LOFT’s corporate commitment to help St. Jude.

“For the past 10 years from mid-November to the end of December, The LOFT has run a national giving campaign for St. Jude,” she said.

“We invite customers to make a donation at the store and our customers have really supported this project. The LOFT at The Avenue ranked second in percent of meeting goals out of 900 stores across the country.”

The store was able to quadruple its original goal of $3,000 when it raised $12,000 last year.

Buesing wanted to raise the fundraising to the next level and The Avenue was happy to help with the Thanks & Giving Stroll, an event mall management hopes will become an annual tradition. The Avenue provides wreaths to the merchants, who then decorate them.

For The LOFT wreath, Buesing went for a look that Chip and Joanna Gaines of  HGTV’s “Fixer Upper” fame would appreciate.

“I spent about $200 at Kirkland’s on materials for the wreath,” she said.

She also is adding a $100 gift certificate to The LOFT as part of the wreath package.

The winning bidders will walk out with gorgeous wreaths, certificates or items to keep or give and a nice tax deduction as a gift to St. Jude. Bonuses on each wreath can range up to $500 in value.

For those who can’t make the stroll, the wreaths will be available for viewing and bidding through Dec. 11, when the last bid is accepted. Merchants will have a bid sheet near the wreaths. Winning bids will be notified after Dec. 11.

The LOFT will have a list of stores participating in the Thanks & Giving Stroll.

The LOFT is at 2261 Town Center Ave., Suite 113, in Viera.