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November 28, 2017

Holiday Kids' Tree arrives at Capitol, lighting ceremony is Friday

By: Andrew Lenderman   Comments: 0
The theme of the 2017 AWB Holiday Kids' Tree is "Friends of the Forest," featuring plush versions of Washington's native wildlife. These stuffed animals will be given away to children's hospitals when the tree is taken down after the holidays. (Photo: Brian Mittge/AWB)

The holiday season officially arrived with the AWB Holiday Kids’ Tree in Olympia this morning, which highlights 29 years of charitable giving by AWB members across the state.

The 30-foot Noble fir tree, donated by Weyerhaeuser’s Vail Tree Farm, was pushed through the Capitol’s front doors by state Department of Enterprise Services employees and hefted up the stairs with an extra push by Gov. Jay Inslee.

The Association of Washington Business got to work on decorations, which include 7,000 LED lights and stuffed ornaments that highlight this year’s theme, “Friends of the Forest,” and represent animals native to Washington.

Gov. Jay Inslee joins Washington Department of Enterprise Services employees to help put the 2017 Holiday Kids' Tree into place in the Capitol rotunda on Tuesday, Nov. 28, 2017. The 30-foot noble fir was donated by Weyerhaeuser and grown on its Vail Tree Farm. (Photo: Brian Mittge/AWB)

“The holidays are here and there’s still time to donate to this year’s AWB Holiday Kids’ Tree Project,” Association of Washington Business President Kris Johnson said. “This is a great way to get involved with giving back to our communities, and it’s our members’ generosity that make this possible.”

Indeed, AWB members from across Washington anchor this season of giving and generosity. To date, businesses and individuals have donated more than $390,000 to the AWB Holiday Kids’ Tree Project, which raises money to help children and families in need in rural areas across Washington. This year’s donations will be granted to 18 rural fire districts in nine counties, where firefighters will purchase food and gifts for local families. Each fire district will also be given a large bag of gifts to take back to their communities.

Thurston Talk has more on how the donations to the Holiday Kids' Tree Project positively impact families.

Donate today by visiting our web site here, or give Bonnie Millikan a call at 360.943.1600.

And please join us Friday at 6 p.m. for the tree-lighting ceremony at the Capitol rotunda. This free family event, open to all, features a children’s choir, refreshments and remarks from Secretary of State Kim Wyman and AWB President Johnson.

Washington National Guard Company Commander and 1st Lieutenant Shawnta M. DiFalco and her two daughters, ages 14 and 16, will assist Wyman in flipping the over-sized switch that lights the tree and kicks off the Christmas season.

See a slideshow of today’s tree arrival here.