It’s been splashed all over DC’s local news, so you may already know this year’s National Christmas Tree hails from Auburn, Pennsylvania. The tree is an 18 1/2-foot Concolor fir that arrived in DC by horse-drawn wagon on November 21, 2022. It is decorated, as it is every year, with one-of-a-kind handmade ornaments made by ordinary Americans. A Concolor fir is a white fir, native to the mountains of western North America, including the Cascade Range and the southern Rocky Mountains of Arizona, New Mexico, and northern Mexico.
Meanwhile, at the Home our artificial tree hails from Michael’s craft store and was dragged down the Home’s attic stairs (bumpity-bump) to the dining room on December 5, 2022, by several teenage boys completing community service hours. With the promise of a reward of pizza and chips, the boys also set up another tree outside on the patio. This one hails from Home Depot and is a bit unsteady in the wind, has lights that no longer work, and is heavy even for football-playing teenage boys. When securely tied in place, however, this faux blue spruce still does a good job of making the outdoors look merry and bright.
The indoor tree was decorated by Staff and Guests with a miscellaneous assortment of ornaments collected over the years, including a few from the White House collection. Our hapless little six-footer burst fully to life and seasonal glory once our string of colored lights (purchased half-off at last year’s CVS Christmas sale) was wound around it and plugged in.
Voila! Now we felt we were ready for Santa.
However, we realized how much of our holiday decorating was still incomplete when a sophisticated decorating team from the Town and Country Garden Club returned for their annual holiday visit. Once again, in a few short hours, the Home was transformed from an erstwhile Charlie Brown Christmas setting to one in keeping with the Pathway of Peace tradition a few miles away, on the Ellipse adjacent to the White House.
Since 1923, the National Christmas Tree, surrounded by trees from all 52 states, DC, and the territories, has been a sight to behold. The Home can hold its own amid this holiday pageantry thanks to the decorating talents of the Garden Club members. They have contributed their merry-making to the Home since 1957. We deeply appreciate the Garden Club and all of those who donate to the Home.
We wish all of the Friends of the Home the merriest of Holiday Seasons and a very Happy New Year.