COLVILLE, WA - An 88-foot Engelmann Spruce tree from Eastern Washington is headed to Washington D.C. to serve as the Christmas tree in front of the U.S. Capitol.
The Forest Service held a tree cutting ceremony in the Colville National Forest on Friday. The tree then began its several week tour across the country. It's set to arrive in Washington D.C. in time for Thanksgiving.
As part of the tour, the tree will stop in Yakima on Thursday at Millennium Plaza from 10:30 AM to 12:30 PM.
It will then stop in Kennewick on Saturday at the Three Rivers Convention Center from 4:00-5:30 PM.
Forest Staff selected several tree candidates to be the nation's Christmas tree, and in June the superintendent of the capitol grounds made the final selection. The tree grew on the Newport District in Pend Oreille County.
The Capitol Christmas Tree will travel with companion trees designated for offices around the capital, and more than 5,000 handmade ornaments. Children ages 5-19 who submit ornaments will be entered to win a trip to Washington, D.C. to help light the tree with House Speaker John Boehner at a ceremony in early December.
After the lighting ceremony, the Capitol Christmas Tree will be lit nightly from dusk to 11:00 PM throughout the holiday season.