Macomb, Ill. — Wesley Village Retirement Community director of marketing Kim Daudelin and a handful of fraternity members from Western Illinois University's Sigma Chi brotherhood gathered in the cold Tuesday afternoon to begin setting up 220 Christmas trees.

"Lights of Love," Wesley Village's annual Christmas fundraising campaign, allows individuals to donate $100 and sponsor one of the lighted Christmas trees that will line the front driveway, walking path and garden area. Sponsors may designate a name to appear on a plaque next the tree.

Sigma Chi member Brandon DeLaurentis, 19, said it was his first year assisting with the event, although his fraternity has been involved with "Lights of Love" for five years.

"It's good to just help out in the community a little, perform some community service," he said.

Daudelin, who has been involved with "Lights of Love" for each of her seven years at Wesley Village, said donations from this year's campaign may go to Wesley's permanent endowment fund or benevolent care fund.

The benevolent care fund, Daudelin said, assists individuals in Wesley Village's health care center who are dependent on Medicare and exhausted their other financial resources.

"Last year we raised $42,000," she said about last year's fundraising campaign. "This year we have a have a goal of $40,000."

The official lighting of the "Lights of Love" trees will take place at 5 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 5. In conjunction with the tree lighting, Wesley Village will hold a reception with a "Christmas Around the World" theme.

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