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Come hang out in Evanston around Christmas time because you might see a beauty. … It is Evanston’s new Christmas tree. It’s a Colorado Blue Spruce. This year it was donated by the Gottesman family. Every year a family donates a tree and it becomes the Evanston Christmas tree.
Paul D’Agostino, superintendent of Parks, Forestry and Facilities Management for the City of Evanston says, “If a family did not donate a tree it would cost $2,000 or $3,000 to buy a tree. For the last 25 years, a family has donated a tree.”
Mr. Stuart Gottesman, one of the family members who owns the house and tree says: “My feelings are kind of mixed. One of the things that makes this house special is that tree. But I’m glad we can donate it to the City and everyone can enjoy it. I think about the people who we bought the house from and how special the tree is for them. It’s happy and sad because everyone in Evanston will get to see it with lights.”
The way the City chops it down is not normal. They hold it up at the top with a crane and do one or two chops at the bottom. The tree has to come down because it’s blocking the family’s sewer pipe and natural sunlight.
David Taylor, a certified arborist with Sunrise Tree Care, says: “The tree is about 48 feet tall and the trunk is 16 inches in diameter.” The city can only take a 30 foot tall tree, so 18 feet will have to come down off the tree or the wind would blow it down. Yikes! The tree is also 54 years old.
The tree will be placed in the middle of Fountain Square. When the tree gets to Fountain Square the tree will be decorated and Santa will come. When Christmas is over, the City will grind up the tree and it will become mulch for Evanston family gardens, according to Mr. D’Agostino
Note: Reporter is a member of the Gottesman family. Alice Gottesman, 8, is a second-grader at Kingsley Elementary School and wrote this story for her class.