A 74-foot Lutz spruce tree will soon make its way from Alaska’s Chugach National Forest to adorn the west lawn of the U.S. Capitol building, ferried along by more than half a million dollars in corporate donations, Alaska Dispatch News reports.
“The way that the Capitol Christmas Tree operates is with a significant amount of private-sector support,” said Bruce Ward, president of Choose Outdoors, a nonprofit that solicits and coordinates donations for the annual project. Nearly $500,000 of that comes from “in-kind” donations — the truck to transport it, and the driver’s time, fuel, hotel rooms and cranes, Ward said. Companies have donated $140,000 in cash, including $50,000 from Shell, Ward said.
The People’s Tree,” as it is known, has been an annual fixture on the Capitol grounds since 1964.