Xmas tree makes journey to the governor’s mansion


Christmas tree makes its journey from a yard in Desloge to the governor’s mansion

This year’s Christmas tree on the lawn of the Missouri’s Governor’s Mansion was donated by Desloge resident Doris Baker.

Missouri Department of Conservation

Doris Baker has been looking to get rid of a spruce tree in her yard for about two or three years.

The Desloge resident’s daughter thought it would make a great Christmas tree for someone.

“It was a beautiful tree, honestly, but it was taking up half my yard and trying to invade my house,” Baker said.

They finally found the perfect spot for the 40-foot Norway Spruce: the lawn of the Missouri Governor’s Mansion.

Baker’s niece saw an article in the Daily Journal that the governor’s office was taking submissions for this year’s Christmas tree. Her daughter jumped at the opportunity and submitted photos of her tree.

First they found out their tree was in contention, and then a few weeks ago, they found out it had been selected out of about a dozen other trees.

“I’m glad somebody picked my tree,” Baker said. “They said it was the prettiest and the biggest one they’ve ever had.”

It took over three hours and five trucks for them to get the tree out of her yard. Plus a truck long enough to haul it to Jefferson City.

“It was exciting for us and it also saved me some money,” Baker joked.

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The tree arrived in Jefferson City on Monday.

Now that the 40-foot tall, 24-feet in diameter tree is out of her yard, she said she has so much more light in her house. The first time she saw the light in the hallway, she thought she had left the bedroom light on.

“It looked like it was eating my house,” Baker said. “I looked out my bedroom window and all I saw was the inside of the tree.”

The tree arrived in Jefferson City on Monday.

Baker said she and her daughter plan to go to the annual tree lighting on Friday. The lighting will be at 6 p.m.

Mayor David Kater said it’s an honor that the governor’s Christmas tree is from Desloge.

“It’s really nice,” he said. “It kind of put us on the map right there at the governor’s mansion.”

The lighting of the tree will be followed by this year’s Candlelight Tours. The tours will run until 8 p.m. on Friday and from 6-8 p.m. on Dec. 7 to Dec. 9.

The tours are free. But due to COVID-19, this year’s tours have moved to a time-ticketed reservation system to allow for responsible social distancing. Reservations can be made here through the Friends of the Missouri Governor’s Mansion.

Tickets will be sent via email once a reservation is made. Guests will need to present their tickets upon entering the mansion.

During the tours, visitors will be able to walk through the festively decorated ground floor of the mansion.

Nikki Overfelt-Chifalu is a reporter for the Daily Journal. She can be reached at noverfelt@dailyjournalonline.com.

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