Poinsettia Celebration Ushers in Christmas Spirit

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It seemed as if every nook and cranny of the Ellison's Greenhouses was filled with poinsettias.

The owner, P.J. Ellison, says there was a good reason.

"To be the beginning of the holiday season and to help people get into the spirit," Ellison said, "and nothing pronounces Christmas -- at least in our world -- more than poinsettias.

Visitors like Candy Huebner say she could not agree more.

"This is the way we start our Christmas," Huebner said. "We come out here and get all in the spirit, big family time and have a wonderful time out here."

For 17 years, the Poinsettia Celebration has brought breeders and buyers together to collaborate. However, over the years, it has evolved into a magical Christmas destination where visitors look forward to seeing things like the huge six-foot-by-six-foot poinsettias that bare the name of this state: the Texas-sized Poinsettia.

Also drawing crowds is the giant Christmas tree that stands 16 feet tall and is created with the tropical plant.

"Every year it changes, and people get to guess what it's going to look like," Ellison said.

In the midst of all the poinsettias on display, visitors found a whole lot more. Area and out-of-town vendors were on hand selling canned preserves, paintings, crafts and plants.

Vernell Thane, who came to the celebration with her husband, says the annual event has something for everyone.

"Whether it be poinsettias or canned goods or whatever is for sale here, there are so many things that you can buy here," Thane said.

However, those who savor each holiday may say, "hey, it is not Thanksgiving yet." Huebner has a response.

"But if you start looking at the poinsettias, they're so gorgeous, and Santa with his rosy cheeks," she said. "It can't help but feel like Christmas."

Bill Thane, Vernell's husband, says the Poinsettia Celebration lets him take advantage of the Christmas spirit early.

"I just enjoy coming out here and looking at the beautiful poinsettias, and it certainly puts us all in the Christmas Spirit," Bill said.

"I think maybe once you come you look forward to come again," Vernell added.