November 26, 2011 in Nation/World

White House tree from Wisconsin

Kim Geiger Tribune Washington bureau
Associated Press photo

The White House Christmas tree, a 19-foot-tall balsam fir from a farm near Neshkoro, Wis., arrives at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. in Washington on Friday.
(Full-size photo)

WASHINGTON – A horse-drawn wagon presented first lady Michelle Obama with the 19-foot balsam fir tree that will be the official White House Christmas tree.

The 18-year-old tree arrived Friday from a farm near Neshkoro, Wis. Growers Tom and Sue Schroeder were at the White House for the arrival of the tree, which was harvested last week and shipped to Washington.

The tree was hand-picked by the White House superintendent of grounds and an official with the National Park Service after the Schroeders won the National Christmas Tree Association’s National Christmas Tree contest in August.

The tree will be set up in the Blue Room of the White House, where it will be decorated by volunteers and White House staff. The theme will honor Blue Star families. The first public viewing of the tree and other White House decorations will be on Wednesday, when the first lady welcomes Gold Star and Blue Star families to the White House.

Ultimately, the tree will be viewed by about 100,000 visitors to the White House this holiday season.

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