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U.S. Capitol Christmas tree makes way through the valley

Christmas tree

The U.S. Capital Christmas tree made its way through the Ohio Valley on Saturday -- 3,800 miles into the 4200 mile journey from Oregon.

The People's Tree began in 1964 when the first live tree was placed on the Capitol Lawn. This year, the 70-plus foot noble fur will be the first of its kind to take root in D.C.

"The process of getting here started about 3 years ago before service decides what state the trees going to be chosen from and then different forces compete to figure out where and who gets to gift the tree," said Greg Moore, patrol captain, U.S. Forces.

After the tree is chosen, cut and lowered to its temporary home, the bed of a truck, it is dawned with hand crafted ornaments.

"The people of Oregon, from kindergarten to seniors, made us 10,000 handcrafted ornaments and what we brought and put on the street is just a sampling of those, so people could see the types of ornaments that will be throughout D.C.," said Nikki Swanson, district ranger, Sweet Home Oregon.

Then it is hauled away, down a more than 4,000-mile journey to Washington, D.C.

"I was chosen to escort this tree across the country, and the reason we are specifically here is because my family is from here or standing on land of my family has, it's been around late 1700s," Moore said.

Today this special stop was made to celebrate with the Moore family, but they aren't alone. Communities all across the country have visited the tree and left their mark on this traveling holiday trophy.

"Bringing a little bit of Oregon through the states and small communities that we've seen its been a once in a life time experience," said Scott Owen, public affairs specialist.

"It has been the most amazing thing that I've ever had the opportunity to be a part of it might be the most amazing thing I ever get to do in my entire life. I've never experienced so much joy in my life every single stop there's just so much joy that this tree has stopped in their town and people get assigned a banner and wish the nation well or their family and friends at the next stop well," said Swanson.

"We've been to 31 stops I believe so far and everyone has made us feel more as if were coming home instead of visiting everybody is very happy it's been the holidays pretty much for three weeks in travel," said Swanson.


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