Friday, November 25, 2005

Beaumont's Christmas Tree

As most of you know, Beaumont was hit by Hurricane Rita last September. Since we lost too many trees due to the hurricane, finding a proper Christmas tree wasn't an easy task. But, the end of the search for a special Christmas tree had a happy ending.

The Beaumont Enterprise reported:

"As decorating chairman, I was in hopes of seeing downtown really lit up as a thank you to the first responders of our city during Hurricane Rita. We wanted to present the city with a beautiful tree," Neild [chairman of the decorating committee for the Winter Wonderland Parade in Beaumont] said.

She initially looked for a live tree from a tree farm, but the storm had damaged them. Then she started searching for an artificial tree, in the 24- to 30-foot range.

Much to her shock, the bids she received were close to $20,000.

Neild, who then started looking at rentals, found a company in Houston, Party Prop, Inc. She told a sales rep what she needed.


Neild inquired about a 24-30 foot tree. They didn't have any.

We do, however, the sales rep said, have a 55-foot tree.

Neild was concerned that they'd never be able to afford it, but told her to get additional details.

"The next day she called me back and said, 'We would like to make that tree available to you.' I asked for ballpark figure. Would it be $40,000? No. $30,000. No, no, she said. I'll get back with you. I thought, well, maybe we can raise the money," Neild said.

The sales rep called the next day and said they wanted to make the tree a gift to the city.


Thank you Houston for making Beaumont's Christmas a better one.


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