The Missouri Department of Conservation is looking for a super-branchy evergreen to grace the governor's mansion this coming holiday season. But for the first time ever, the agency wants your super branchy evergreen. The MDC has sent out a casting call for a "white pine, Norway spruce, or eastern red cedar that is at least 40 feet tall and fully branched on all sides," according to their website.
In previous years, the search for a sufficiently grandiose holiday tree was shared amongst forestry division employees across the state, who simply kept an eye out for good-looking trees throughout the year. This year, MDC is hoping to enlist tree connoisseurs from the general population.
"We want that classic look so that it can be decorated and lit up to be a real highlight for all the people who are going to see it," MDC Community Forestry Coordinator Nick Kuhn tells Daily RFT.
With only 220 or so forestry division employees tramping around at any one time, finding just the right one wasn't easy, Kuhn says. This year, the department is hoping some holiday-minded citizen with an evergreen facing "removal" (say, from a construction site or due to home remodeling) will step forward.
"We don't want people to think they're losing a tree. Give us the opportunity to know if it's a tree we could use, and we can put it to use instead of it being lost," Kuhn says.
The tree, which will be left up from Thanksgiving until sometime after New Year's, needs to be healthy, 35-40 feet tall or more, and, again, should be a pine, Norway spruce, or eastern red cedar.
If your tree is selected, the MDC will cut and haul the thing away for free, and you'll get a personalized thank-you note from the governor and an invitation to the lighting ceremony.