Bring your best wishes to interactive art installation

  • Wish Tree installation begins Sept. 24 and time-lapse video will be available at the event's conclusion.

    Wish Tree installation begins Sept. 24 and time-lapse video will be available at the event's conclusion. Courtesy of Edan Gelt

Submitted by Edan Gelt
Updated 9/22/2020 9:22 AM

Inspired by the popular book "Wishtree" by Katherine Applegate, Baird & Warner Northwest Suburban is creating an outdoor Wish Tree by adorning its exterior trees with ribbons of hope from the community.

The Mission Community wish infused project will result in an art installation based on the good thoughts and intentions of the Arlington Heights community and surrounding suburbs. The four-day event, commencing on Sept. 24, will include in-person and virtual ribbon wishes; a seedling giveaway; and a children's book drive for Partners For Our Community.


The event will include a 35-foot net, 10-feet high, which will span from tree to tree along the parking lot island at 210 W. Northwest Hwy. in Arlington Heights. The Wish Tree net will face Northwest Highway and will be seen during the day and night through the use of twinkling lights woven through the net, along with colorful ribbons.

The word "COMMUNITY" will be displayed in the center of the net and various other materials will be used to catch the sunlight and attention of passersby. The tree will grow in design over the course of four days.

"Although wishes can be made virtually with an online request, our team is hoping to bring the community together in-person," said Greg Phillips, Baird & Warner broker manager.

"Clients, neighbors, family and friends of all ages are invited to visit the Wish Tree to add their wishes and intentions. We will provide precut ribbons and markers. If community members are not able to make it, we will complete a ribbon for them upon request," Phillips said.

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To celebrate the growth of the Wish Tree, attendees on Saturday, Sept. 26, will receive their own seedling between 11 a.m.-1 p.m., while supplies last.

Since the event was inspired by a story of inclusivity and community, all attendees are encouraged to bring new or gently used children's books for Partners For Our Communities.

POC provides health care, social services, literacy programs, children's programs, food pantry and more to members of the community, including the Palatine Public Library, Northwest Community Hospital, Harper College, Women in Need Growing Stronger (WINGS) and more.

For information about the organization, visit

CDC guidelines will be followed to keep attendees safe. At the culmination of the project, a time-lapse video will be available for the community to see.


Mission Community, established by Baird & Warner Northwest in Arlington Heights, is an ongoing program of goodwill and community support funded by the local office and its agents. The initiative started during the pandemic and was created to make a difference by supporting local businesses and organizations with a collective effort of time and talent.

Previous endeavors for giving back have included hosting a recent Fourth of July community distanced Independence Day parade and delivering meals to health care workers.

Over many years, the office has contributed money and time to various organizations, including WINGS, Illinois Food Depository, Journey to Pads, CEDA, Feed my Starving Children and more.

For information about Mission Community, visit or contact Greg Phillips, managing broker, at (847) 392-1855

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