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U.S. Capitol Christmas Tree coming through Santa Fe

The U.S. Capitol Christmas Tree is loaded into a truck bound for Washington D.C on Wednesday. (Roberto E. Rosales/Journal)

SANTA FE, N.M. — The U.S. Capitol Christmas Tree will come through Santa Fe next week on its merry way to Washington D.C., according to a news release from the city.

The 60-foot tall Blue Spruce will be cut from the Quest Ranger District in the Carson National Forest on Wednesday but won’t come through Santa Fe until a week later when on Nov. 13 the city plans activities that include a visit from Smokey Bear. The public will be able to view the tree at a free event from 5 to 6 p.m. at the Santa Fe Place shopping mall, 4250 Cerrillos Road.

The Carson National Forest is also providing smaller “companion trees” that will be used to decorate offices inside the U.S. Capitol and other sites in Washington, D.C., according to the release, along with “10,000 handmade ornaments created by New Mexicans.”

Santa Fe is one of 25 communities across the United States that will host special events as the tree makes its five-day 2,000-mile journey to the U.S. Capitol where the official tree lighting ceremony will be held in early December.

The stops along the way are sponsored by the national nonprofit group, Choose Outdoors, which promotes outdoor recreation and active lifestyles, according to the mission statement on its website.

“We are grateful to the host cities such as Santa Fe who play a vital part of bringing the tree across the country and this annual celebration”, Bruce Ward, Choose Outdoors’ president, said in a news release.

In addition to the appearance by Smokey Bear, the event in Santa Fe will include ornament decorating sponsored by the Rotary Club, a coloring station, and hot cocoa.

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