Nova Scotia's tree for Boston begins journey
Nova Scotia’s Christmas tree for Boston has started its journey to Beantown.
The tree left its home in Lunenburg County Tuesday morning. It will stop at Halifax City Hall for a public sendoff Wednesday morning before making the trip across the border.
Neighbours, community members and hundreds of young students, as well as a representative from the U.S. Consulate, watched as the 15-metre white spruce was cut and lowered to a flatbed truck Tuesday morning.
Mary Lou Milligan generously donated this year’s tree from her property in Mill Cove, N.S. She plans to travel to Boston with her daughter and two grandsons for the tree lighting ceremony on Dec. 5.
"I can't wait to see our tree light up the Boston Common," said Milligan in a statement released Tuesday. "We're so excited to be a part of this special tradition."
For 42 years, Nova Scotia has been sending a Christmas tree to Boston to thank the city for its help after the Halifax Explosion on Dec. 6, 1917.
"The Halifax Explosion was a dark time in our province's history, but the people of Boston were there for us, providing much needed support and aid," said Natural Resources Minister Zach Churchill.
"This beautiful Nova Scotia Christmas tree is a wonderful symbol of our continued gratitude.”
The tree will travel down the Bedford Highway to St. Stephen’s Elementary School for an outdoor student rally before making its way to Halifax’s Grand Parade for a sendoff celebration at 11:30 a.m. Wednesday.
The Nova Scotia Department of Transportation will then transport the tree via the Digby ferry, across the Bay of Fundy to Saint John, then down through Maine and on to Massachusetts.
The tree will arrive at the Boston Common under police escort and will be decorated with hundreds of LED lights ahead of the tree lighting ceremony on Dec. 5.
"We are very grateful to the Milligan family for generously donating this year's tree, which is Boston's official Christmas tree," said Boston Mayor Thomas Menino.
"The beautiful evergreen will brighten the holidays for the public on Boston Common, and we are pleased that the rich gift-giving tradition continues with our friends in Nova Scotia."