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Official State Christmas tree found in the U.P.


IRON RIVER (WKZO) --After months of searching across Michigan, the state’s official Christmas tree, a 68-foot blue spruce, was found in the northwestern reaches of the Upper Peninsula.

Selected by the Michigan Department of Technology, Management and Budget (DTMB), the tree will be delivered to the state Capitol on Saturday, Nov. 9.

The search began in June when the call for tree nominations was announced, and were accepted through the end of July, when the evaluation process began.

The tree will be harvested from the yard of John and Barbara Waara, of Iron River, on Wednesday, Nov. 6. Since first nominated in 2010, the tree has grown a foot and a half.

This is the 19th tree to be selected from the Upper Peninsula; the other nine trees have come from the Lower Peninsula.

The Michigan Association of Timbermen and the Great Lakes Timber Professionals Association will cut the tree and transport it to Lansing at no cost to the state. A crew from Capitol Facilities will work with Hi-Ball Company of Lansing, who will provide a crane and crew to set the tree on Nov. 9 at 8:30 a.m.

The tree lighting will take place on the evening of Friday, Nov. 22 as part of the 29th annual Silver Bells in the City celebration, which will conclude with fireworks over the State Capitol, weather permitting.