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Hapgood says goodbye, but expects fest to grow

Festival of (Giving) Trees founder moves on

December 07, 2011
SOUTHBRIDGE — Last weekend's Festival of (Giving) Trees marked the last one that will be run by the event's founder and mastermind for 14 years, Sue Hapgood, of Sturbridge.

People involved with it said they'll miss her, but expect the festival itself to continue and keep growing, at least until its goal is met — the end of cancer.

"Sue has worked hard with a strong festival committee all these years," said childhood friend and festival beneficiary Cheryl Osimo, communications director of Silent Spring Institute and Mass. Breast Cancer Coalition. "Whoever the baton's turned over to, we can feel confident the festival will continue because many strong and committed people are staying on."

Hapgood said the festival's directors will choose her successor at their Dec. 20 meeting. In fact, they're replacing eight key volunteers in the near future, something festival treasurer Janet Garon expects will create "a big gap next year," but hopes won't have a major effect on how the event itself runs.

For more on this story, please see tomorrow's Southbridge Evening News.

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