SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The 22nd Annual Festival of Trees opens on Friday at the MassMutual Center in Springfield.

For the past 22 years the day after Thanksgiving has meant the first day of the Springfield Boys & Girls Club’s Festival of Trees with more than 100 decorated trees, according to a news release sent to 22News. There will be raffle tickets for chances to win one of the 100 trees, along with all the gifts associated with the tree.

“So far people just love it, This is a tradition for many families, to come here year after year. They bring their grandchildren, they all come here to do something together,” said Vincent Borello, Executive Director of the Springfield Boys & Girls Club.

The trees will be raffled off at the end of the festival on December 11th, and the winners will be notified by phone to pick up their trees on Monday, December 12th. A 50/50 raffle will also be available for those who want to further support the kids of the Boys and Girls Clubs. Last year’s winner claimed, after taxes, $15,000.

“We wanted to come here, something we want to do every single day after thanksgiving, yes thank you,” said Courtney Olivo from Ludlow.

With the money raised from this Christmas tree raffle the Boys & Girls Club can pay for the many program provided for young people. These trees will wind up in the homes of 138 fortunate families. You could see the excitement in their eyes as they pass each of the trees. This festival of trees is such an important ingredient to the Western Massachusetts holiday season.

The festival opens on Friday, and after the opening, the hours are Wednesdays, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Thursdays 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., Fridays through Saturdays 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Sundays 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. General Admission is $5, with the cost for Seniors is $4, and children 12 and under are free. Military personnel, first responders, and their families are free with ID.

Tickets can be pre-purchased at the MassMutual Center website or visit www.TreeRaffle.com. They do not validate parking as well, so keep that in mind for planning your trip.