Siuslaw River Boardwalk

National Christmas Tree Enroute to DC; Smoke; Festival of Trees; Christmas Baskets

National Christmas Tree Enroute to DC

The Willamette national forest will be supplying the national Christmas Tree that will be displayed in DC.  The tree is making its way t here with several stops along the way.  It had a stop at the state Capitol yesterday.  Stacy Nalley is the Public Outreach Coordinator for the state capitol

“The event was wonderful, the tree came in right around 9:45 or so and at 10 am we had a number of speakers talking about the tree and its significance to the state and of course to the nation.”

The tree will be taking the journey down the Oregon trail in celebration of its 175th anniversary and the 50th anniversary of the National Trails Association.  Along the way it will be making several stops to commemorate the trail.

“They’re making about 25 whistle stop tour visits along that reverse route.”

In addition to the 80 foot Douglas fir that is being delivered to DC, two additional trees were donated to the state capitol in Salem that will be set up in the rotunda.  There will be a tree lighting ceremony on Tuesday, November 27th.

Smoke

Smoke moved into the area yesterday as winds pushed through sending a long plume of it along the Oregon coast and into the Willamette valley.  A new system that tracks the smoke has been put into place and been made available to the public.  It is a new High Resolution Rapid Refresh model that tracks smoke from wildfires.  The system is still considered experimental, but creators of the site have been pleased with its success and made it available.  The system can track smoke through infrared images taken from satellites.  This morning there is no amount of significant smoke showing, but that could change as the day progresses.  Air quality alerts will be issued if necessary.  Yesterday in Eugene levels were considered unhealthy for some residents that may be dealing with respiratory issues.

Festival of Trees

Back to Christmas trees.  The Oregon Coast Military Museum will be holding its annual Festival of Trees.  The 6th annual event will be held on November 24th at the Florence Event Center from 10am to 4 pm.  Trees, table top trees and wreaths will be on display and many items will be available for immediate purchase.  Sunday the 25th will be the Gala event with dinner and a live auction.  Tickets can be purchased by calling 999-1523.

Christmas Baskets

Soroptomist International of Florence are actively making plans for the annual 2018 Community Christmas Baskets and Toys Project for area families in need.  They are currently in need of financial support in order to purchase the food for the baskets.  Last year 375 families received baskets of food and 685 children received toys or food as a result of the generosity of the community and the work of countless volunteers.  All donations are tax deductible and the Soroptomist ask that any donated toys be new and unwrapped for children from infant to 12 years old.  A list of the sights for dropping off toys will be published by the Siuslaw News.  To make a cash donation you can contact Michelle Fraley at 997-3434.