Anne Lupardus, Office of the Governor, 608-261-2162
Balsam Fir from Mercer to be Cut Tuesday, November 22
Governor Doyle today announced that this year’s Capitol holiday tree will be a
35-foot Balsam Fir from the Mercer area.
“The Holiday Tree represents the great diversity and community spirit of our state,”
Governor Doyle said. “So many people work together each year to choose just the
right tree, transport it to Madison, decorate it, and prepare it for the holidays.
Thousands of Wisconsin citizens will stop by to see the tree and their beautiful
Capitol building. The Holiday Tree, much like the season, really brings Wisconsin
Marvin and Jan Borth of Mercer donated the Balsam Fir, which had grown so large that
it was nearly blocking access to their home. The Borth’s called their State
Representative, Gary Sherman, and offered their tree to the capitol. Bill Beckman,
state capitol grounds manager, along with Tim Fitzgerald, a Department of Natural
Resource’s forester at Mercer, inspected the fir and found it suitable in dimension
for use as a holiday tree.
The Balsam Fir has the largest geographical distribution of any North American fir
species. It is a medium-sized tree, usually 40 to 60 feet in height with a maximum
age of 200 years.
The tree will be cut on Tuesday, November 22, 2005 by two notable Wisconsin loggers:
Henry Schienbeck of Butternut and Wayne Hamann of Medford. Henry Schienbeck is past
president of Timber Producer Association and currently on the board of directors.
Wayne Hamann is past president of Wisconsin Professional Loggers Association and
currently on the Executive Committee of American Loggers Council. Wayne Hamann was
also recently named the “Outstanding Logger of the Year” for the Lake States region.
After the tree is harvested, it will be transported to Madison where it will be
decorated and lit in an annual ceremony at the State Capitol rotunda on Friday,
December 2, 2005.
“This has become a rich holiday tradition for Wisconsin, Governor Doyle said. And
thanks to the Borth’s generous donation, I’m proud to continue this great tradition
that symbolizes the start of the holiday season and a special time to gather
together with family and friends.