A Majestic Norway Spruce from the Mountain State Set to Adorn the U.S. Capitol for the Holidays

by Sophia Chen
Capitol Christmas Tree

Destined for the prestigious West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol, a grand Norway spruce measuring 63 feet (19 meters) is being transported from the verdant expanses of West Virginia’s Allegheny Mountains to serve as the 2023 Christmas tree.

Amidst a wintry cascade, the dedicated team commenced the felling of the tree within the Monongahela National Forest, marking the commencement of this year’s festive preparations.

The selection of this splendid spruce was carried out by Jim Kaufmann, the Capitol Grounds Director under the Architect of the Capitol’s office, as stated by the USDA Forest Service.

In the forthcoming days, the spruce will embark on a ceremonial tour through several communities across West Virginia before its anticipated arrival at the nation’s capital. In a display of local craftsmanship, the tree will be adorned with hand-made ornaments provided by West Virginians, culminating in a ceremonial lighting event scheduled to follow Thanksgiving festivities.

This event upholds a 53-year-old custom whereby one of the 154 national forests across the United States has the honor of contributing a tree to grace the West Lawn during the winter holidays.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Capitol Christmas Tree

What type of tree has been chosen for the U.S. Capitol Christmas tree in 2023?

A 63-foot Norway spruce from the Allegheny Mountains in West Virginia has been selected to be the U.S. Capitol Christmas tree for 2023.

Who is responsible for selecting the U.S. Capitol Christmas tree?

The selection of the Capitol Christmas tree is the responsibility of Jim Kaufmann, the Director of Capitol Grounds for the Architect of the Capitol.

Where does the tradition of the Capitol Christmas tree come from?

This tradition, now in its 53rd year, involves choosing a Christmas tree from one of America’s 154 national forests to be placed on the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol for the holiday season.

Will there be any special events before the Capitol Christmas tree is lit?

Before the official lighting, the Capitol Christmas tree will tour several West Virginia cities, showcasing handcrafted ornaments from its people, culminating in a ceremonial lighting after Thanksgiving.

More about Capitol Christmas Tree

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SandraK November 5, 2023 - 6:00 am

Last year’s tree was beautiful but I think WV is gonna top it with their spruce. Christmas in the capital is just magical, isn’t it?

Mike_Oregon November 5, 2023 - 1:19 pm

gotta love this time of the year, but transporting a tree that big, must be quite the challenge wonder how they do it?

Becky Smith November 5, 2023 - 5:32 pm

oh wow a 63 foot tree, thats gonna be an amazing sight at the capitol! Really captures the holiday spirit, I’d say


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