Senate Passes Christmas Tree Resolution

Washington, DC- Today, the United States Senate unanimously passed a resolution sponsored by Oregon’s Senator Jeff Merkley designating the first full week of December in 2011 as “National Christmas Tree Week”. 

“This resolution honors the joy that Christmas trees bring to families every December, and also the Oregon farms and families that produce these beautiful trees. While Christmas trees are grown in all 50 states, they are vitally important to Oregon’s economy. We produce more Christmas trees than any other state in the union, and we are proud of that tradition.” 

In 2010, Oregon farmed over 57,000 acres of Christmas trees, selling over 6.4 million trees to a value of over $90 million to Oregon’s economy. The resolution is cosponsored by Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR), Richard Burr (R-NC), Olympia Snowe (R-ME), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Patty Murray (D-WA), Bob Casey (D-PA), Maria Cantwell (D-WA),  and Susan Collins (R-ME).

 The full text of the resolution is below.

Title: Designating the first full week of December in 2011 as “National Christmas Tree Week”.

Whereas Christmas trees are grown in all 50 States;

Whereas Christmas trees have been sold commercially in the United States since about 1850;

Whereas Edward Johnson, assistant to Thomas Edison, came up with the idea of electric lights for Christmas trees in 1882;

Whereas President Calvin Coolidge started the National Christmas Tree Lighting ceremony on the White House lawn in 1923;

Whereas there are close to 15,000 farms growing Christmas trees in the United States;

Whereas there are approximately 100,000 people employed full or part-time in the Christmas tree industry;

Whereas Christmas tree farms in the United States planted approximately 35,000,000 Christmas trees in 2011 to replace those harvested in 2010; and

Whereas growing Christmas trees preserves green space and small family-owned farms, provides habitats for wildlife, and sequesters carbon dioxide: Now, therefore, be it

Resolved, That the Senate—

(1) designates the first full week of December in 2011 as “National Christmas Tree Week”;

(2) encourages the celebration of Christmas trees during that week;

(3) recognizes the role Christmas trees have played in the history of the United States;

(4) reaffirms the environmental benefits of Christmas tree farms and recycled Christmas trees;

(5) encourages the recycling of Christmas trees after the holiday season; and

(6) celebrates the joy Christmas trees bring to families across the United States.