(Apple Valley)–Christmas came early to Apple Valley when a new tree was planted this week to replace the town’s Christmas tree that succumbed to a vicious bark beetle attack last September.
The 25-foot deodar cedar, and the labor to install it, was donated by The Home Depot.
“It was great to be able to help the town out,” said Store Manager Chad Cox. “Our associates live here and work here and our entire customer base is from here so it was really great to partner with the community on this.”
Town Manager Frank Robinson approached The Home Depot in Apple Valley to see if they could help, and a quick approval from the corporate offices set off a hunt for the perfect tree.
Cox explained that the donation was a big undertaking because of the size of the tree. “It came in a 60 gallon box, which is about five feet by five feet,” he said, noting that they had to order the tree from a vendor they hadn’t used before. They hired Twin Oaks Landscape and Maintenance (Wrightwood) for the planting.
The new tree will be officially dedicated on June 21 during this season’s Desert Valley Hospital Sunset Concert Series kick off.
The original tree was donated by Apple Valley residents Frank and Sally Steele in 2002. Town staff would decorate its limbs each year shortly after Thanksgiving and kick off the holiday season with a tree lighting ceremony. The loss of the tree was heartbreaking to staff and residents who considered the tree the centerpiece of the Town’s holiday festivities. The removal was documented in a tribute video on the Town of Apple Valley’s YouTube video channel at www.youtube.com/TownOfAppleValleyCA.
For the 2011 holiday season Agio Real Estate owner Kari Leon donated the funds to purchase a “Tree of Lights” that was installed in the rose garden patio near Town Hall. Agio Real Estate occupies the former Town Hall building at the corner of Dale Evans Parkway and Highway 18, which was the site of the very first Town tree lighting in 2000.
“We are so grateful to Agio Real Estate for saving Christmas last year,” said Julie Gilmer, Event Coordinator. “The Agio Tree of Lights will continue to have a place of honor at Town Hall for years to come.”
The Town of Apple Valley offers a full calendar of events thanks to generous donors like The Home Depot. Sponsorships are still available for the Freedom Festival, select Sunset Concert performances and other Town programs and activities. For more information on how you can become a community partner, contact Marketing and Public Affairs Officer Kathie Martin at (760) 240-7000 x7070 or visit www.AppleValleyEvents.org