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Chimes and Lights Festival searching for tree

Lights? Check.

Decorations? Check.

Tree-topper? Check.

Tree? Umm, not yet.

So goes the checklist of this year’s Chimes and Lights Festival Committee, which again is searching for the tree that acts as the centerpiece of downtown Port Orchard’s annual holiday festival.

Simply put, it wouldn’t be the same without the grandiose display.

Yet, committee chair John Clauson said the search for the perfect tree is a path the committee has traveled in past years, as well.

“One of the challenges we’ve had the last couple of years has been finding the tree,” Clauson said.

Clauson said choosing a likely specimen usually isn’t the issue. Getting it to City Hall is. “Part of the issue is that, because of the size of the tree, we have to be able to get a fairly large truck up next to it,” he said.

According to Clauson, the tree is retrieved by a crane and set on the back of a flat-bed semitruck. He said the desired tree would have to be near a road or a trail that would be accessible to the large truck.

Clauson reports the committee is looking for a tree between 25 and 30 feet tall and shaped like a traditional “holiday” tree. In past years, a Douglas Fir has been used.

“We want to put out a request to the community and see if anyone has a tree they were interested in donating to the festival,” Clauson said.

To acknowledge the generous donor, Clauson said a small sign would be placed at the base of the tree during the festival.

“If folks do have one that they’re interested in donating, we’ll send out folks out to take a look at it,” Clauson said. “We will be excited.”

To donate call John Clauson at 478-6223.

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