Posted on December 13, 2017


The first year of The Holiday Express, one of Denton County Friends of the Family's signature events, was a resounding success! Over 350 people from all over Denton County flocked to the Patterson-Appleton Arts Center in Denton on the bright morning of December 2nd, with the event raising over $20,000

Families came in to the "North Pole" in their Christmas morning best (pajamas, character costumes, holiday sweaters and more!) and were transported to a winter wonderland. Santa and Mrs. Claus merrily took photos with families; brunch tables piled high with everything from pancakes and mimosas, to a DIY hot cocoa bar; a Christmas cookie decorating station; and fun kid-friendly activities like making reindeer hats and marshmallow catapults! Mom and Dad had some cheer waiting for them as well with an elaborately decorated silent auction. We are so grateful to all of the local businesses that came together to make the North Pole a ton of holiday fun: Eric Gilmore with DFW Photography, Wildhorse Grill, Hypnotic Donuts, Cartwrights Ranch House, Fossil Creek Liquor, Café Brazil, Starbucks, Emler Swim School, Exploreum Denton, and SCRAP Denton!  

After an exploration of the North Pole, families ventured over to the Holiday Express (AKA the A-Train). In partnership with DCTA, Friends of the Family decked out half a train car with holiday tinsel and stockings! Families jumped on board and were magically entertained by performers in association with Musical Theatre Denton. The ride was an interactive performance full of carols and holiday fun. When they all jumped off at the "Elf's Playland", they were greeted with a bounce house, playground, and more activities! 

We were very blessed to have State Senator Jane Nelson as our top "Rudolph Sponsor" of the Holiday Express! She had this to say: "When victims of domestic and sexual abuse have the assistance they need to heal, they go on to lead happy, healthy lives. I'm proud to support an organization that invests in victims’ healing by providing shelter, advocacy, counseling and intervention services for Denton County families. This safe, fun holiday fundraiser will become an annual tradition for my family." 

We would like to give a big jolly thanks our top sponsors of The Holiday Express: Senator Jane Nelson, Denton County Transit Authority, Blue Steele Solutions, Bali Mendels with Supreme Lending, Mrs. Sheila Haley, Market Street, Wallace Accounting and Advising, and Sean Kilgore, Attorney at Law and candidate for Judge in Denton County Criminal Court #2. 


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