To celebrate raising over $2.5 million at its Festival of Trees over the last 14 years, the local cancer support nonprofit Ann\u2019s Place will honor Ridgefield\u2019s first couple, Rudy and Peggy Marconi, at its 15th anniversary holiday event. Thousands of people are expected to attend the festival, Friday, Nov. 17, to Sunday, Nov. 19, at the Crowne Plaza in Danbury. \u201cThe festival funds about 20% of our cancer support services, and people are always so generous,\u201d said Shannon Cobb, CEO and president of Ann\u2019s Place. \u201cThey know we don\u2019t charge anything for our services to people facing this horrible disease \u2014 cancer is enough to deal with without having to worry about finances.\u201d \u201cIt\u2019s a place to turn to,\u201d said First Selectman Rudy Marconi. \u201cAnn\u2019s Place assist and supports families that are experiencing an unfortunate experience with cancer \u2026 \u201cSupport for the kids, support for the spouse.\u201d Peggy Marconi serves on the Ann\u2019s Place board. \u201cI joined the board of directors at Ann\u2019s Place in February 2015 after joining the ranks of being a breast cancer survivor,\u201d she said. \u201cFrom the first day I was introduced to this incredible facility, through today, I am always amazed at the peaceful, comforting and safe environment that exists in the building. \u201cI am often asked just exactly what Ann\u2019s Place is and what they do. It\u2019s simple: Ann\u2019s Place provides help and hope to those living with cancer and their loved ones. The clinical social workers, facilitators and wellness experts provide services, including support groups, individual counseling, nutrition classes, and horticulture therapy. They also provide \u00a0wellness activities, such as yoga, tai chi, meditation, and art. \u201cWhen you experience cancer, you realize it can be a very isolating disease,\u201d Peggy Marconi said. \u201cAnn\u2019s Place helps you and your loved ones create a unique pathway through cancer to improve quality of life. \u201cAll these services are free and possible only through generous donations, fund-raisers and philanthropy,\u201d she said. Ann\u2019s Place has a 17,000-square-foot facility in the Ridgebury section of Danbury, just over the Ridgefield line. It has experienced swift growth over the last two years and is grappling with increased costs and a very tight budget, according to CEO Cobb. \u201cWe have seen an increase of about 250 clients \u2014 which brings us to almost 1,300 annually,\u201d she said. The free counseling and wellness programs cost about $930 per person, which is covered by donors and fund-raising events. The Marconis will be honored at the event\u2019s opening night party on Friday, Nov. 17, from 6:30 to 10:30 p.m. There\u2019ll be performances from Broadway talent Katie Diamond, Daniel Levine, Bryan Perri, and Daniela Sikora. The master of ceremonies for the evening will be Ira Joe Fisher, and there\u2019ll be a special salute from Ridgefield Playhouse\u2019s Allison Stockel. The Festival of Trees showcases more than 100 holiday trees, and days at the event are filled with live entertainment on the hour, prizes, a grand raffle, a marketplace, and quilts and handmade items for sale from 16 specialty vendors and local craftsmen. Children may join the \u201cGathering of the Galaxies\u201d characters parties and see magician Tom Pesce on Saturday at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. and take part in interactive entertainment Saturday at 3 p.m. and Sunday at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m., with reserved seating. A new Children\u2019s Winter Village features activities including crafts, face painting, tattoos, Lego building, and more from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. both Saturday and Sunday. Saturday night there\u2019ll be live music by Future Tense, and brewers will offer a Taps & Trees Craft Beer Fest. Festival days are Friday to Sunday, Nov. 17-19, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tickets prices: adults, $10; kids 12 and under and seniors 65 and over, $5; kids under 5, admitted free. For more information and tickets, go to annsplacefestivaloftrees.org or call 203-790-6568.