Colorado spruce becomes latest Capitol Christmas tree

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas on the U.S. Capitol building’s west lawn, where a gigantic spruce tree has gone up for the holidays.

The latest tree to be included in the 50-year Congressional tradition hails from western Colorado’s Grand Mesa, Uncompahgre and Gunnison National Forests.

Plans to haul the 55-foot Engelmann spruce to the nation’s capital started nearly a year ago — and following several festive community stops after its harvesting on Nov. 5, it was raised outside the Capitol last Friday.

The Architect of the Capitol collaborates with the U.S. Forest Service every holiday season to cut and deliver what some call the “people’s tree” cross-country from a different national forest. Last year’s tree made the journey from Carson National Forest in New Mexico.

This year’s tree will be decorated with thousands of LED lights and handmade ornaments crafted by Colorado children.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi will officially light the tree during a ceremony at 5 p.m. on Wednesday, Dec. 2.

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