Branson to Host Capitol Christmas Tree


For the first time, our nation’s official Christmas tree will make an appearance in Branson, arriving on Saturday, Nov. 15, for public viewing in front of the Grand Palace.
At 11 a.m., there will be a 30-minute, star-filled, patriotic and Christmas musical presentation. "Mr. Christmas” Andy Williams will emcee and The Spirit of Christmas dancers, The Lennon Sisters, Pierce Arrow, Bob Anderson, SIX and the cast of Celebrate America will perform.
The 138-year-old sub-Alpine Fir — or Rocky Mountain Fir — left Montana’s Bitterroot National Forest on Nov. 4. It was about 100 feet tall when felled, and 77 feet will be transported.
They rejected some more perfect tree specimens because of their environmentally sensitive positions along creek banks. An elder of the local Salish Indian tribe blessed the tree at a ceremony attended by more than 600 people.
According to US Forest Service representatives, the elder said the tree has a greater calling now, to bring joy to many people. On the 3,100-mile trip, the caravan will stop in 18 Montana cities and three in North Dakota before arriving in Branson, where it will be parked in front of the Grand Palace on Saturday, November 15.
The crew of 13 people who accompany the tree will stay in Branson on Sunday, visiting local attractions. The tree on its 95-foot trailer will be housed overnight inside the Branson Convention Center.
The tree is kept fresh with a rubber “vase” on the cut end with a ready supply of water. Asking a national forest to provide “the people’s tree,” as the Capitol Christmas Tree is often called, is a tradition that started in 1970. Each year since then, a different national forest, and the state in which the forest is located, is asked to provide the tree, and all of the trimmings, as a gift to our nation.
The tree will be officially lit in front of the U.S. Capitol on Dec. 2.