The most popular of Christmas traditions, decorating a Christmas tree, is also one of the most popular holiday traditions at the Tennessee Valley Museum of Art.
The Trees of Christmas exhibit has been a tradition in the Shoals for nearly 40 years, and Stephanie Qualls, curator of exhibitions at the art center, said it’s one of their most popular events.
“It is definitely a community favorite,” Qualls said. “As far as I hear, it always has been. We have people from our community coming in throughout the month. Our traffic is very high.”
Qualls said people from the Shoals will bring family members from out of town to the museum to show them the trees.
Each of the 12-foot fir and spruce trees are decorated with a different theme and by a different person or organization.
Glenn Rikard will have a set of nontraditional trees that have been hand crafted from various materials.
Rikard said he used old paint samples, found bird nests, gourds and tiny woven baskets to make smaller Christmas trees.
Four-H members from Colbert and Franklin counties have decorated a tree with handmade ornaments from students.
The Girl Scouts of North-Central Alabama have decorated a tree to signify the 100th anniversary of Scouting in the United States.
Nickie Campbell and her granddaughter, Morgan Presley, have decorated a tree with a beach theme.
Campell said they used seashells and sand to fill ornaments and others they altered with starfish or paint.
“She did all the glass and I did all the Styrofoam,” Campbell said. “I painted all the stars and she came through with the glue gun and just went ‘pat, pat, pat,’ and there are just a hundred little stars on the tree.”
David Christopher’s Artistic Design Gifts & More has decorated a tree with ornaments that include pictures of their customers and employees.
Tuscumbia Retail Development has a Dickens’ Christmas Y’all tree with a Victorian theme.
The Roy Herston Family from Rogersvlle decorated a tree with snowmen. Jim Allen used “Stars Fell on Alabama” as his theme for a tree.
Loxx Hair Studio chose to highlight the movie “Tangled” with their tree. And Railway Employees Credit Union and Norfolk Southern Railroad teamed for a train-centric tree.
The museum also has a holiday art exhibit that contains local holiday-themed art for sale. Qualls said patrons can purchase the art that’s for sale at the museum and take it with them.
Bobby Bozeman can be reached at
256-740-5722 or bobby.bozeman@