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Crew Scours Chippewa Nat’l Forest For US Capitol Christmas Tree

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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Staff from the U.S. Capitol and the Washington Office of the USDA Forest Service visited northern Minn. in late July to survey trees fit for Christmas in the nation’s capitol.

According to officials, crews searched the Chippewa National Forest near Cass Lake, Minn. They settled upon two trees out of the millions in the protected area, one of which is a backup.

National forest staff had a certain criteria to consider during the search. The tree has to be 60 – 80 feet in height with a gap-free, pyramid-like shape. The trunk has to be straight and branches have to be healthy. The tree’s species also has to have what it takes to endure the long haul to Washington D.C.

The location of the two trees will be kept secret for their safety until late October, when the cutting ceremony will take place.

Forest Supervisor Darla Lenz says the tree’s selection was truly “a one in a million find.”

“This gift from Minnesota and Chippewa National Forest provides opportunities to connect with communities and partners, and helps build awareness of natural resources of our state,” Lenz said.

The cutting ceremony is set for Oct. 29, 2014.

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