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Holiday Tree Now Up in Downtown Basking Ridge

Tree was donated by Basking Ridge family will grace downtown until after New Year's.

In the end, the tree chosen by the Basking Ridge Fire Co. to fill the town center in downtown Basking Ridge was a slightly Sandy-damaged evergreen that had been the number two candidate even before the storm arrived.

On Saturday morning, volunteers from the fire company and first aid squad cut and carefully transported the tree from the home of Steve and Maggie Aloisio on Annin Road to the center of Basking Ridge.

It was trucked to the center of town, in the tree's usual honorary spot on a small square in front of The Presbyterian Church of Basking Ridge, where it was anchored and strapped into place.

The tree was originally 40 feet high, but was cut down to 30 feet to make it easier to transport, said Firefighter Todd Middleton, who said he personally had viewed about 50 candidates for tree-of-the-year. It also had some branches broken when Sandy whirled through the area in late October.

The tree chosen had been an alternative to The call was put out for a replacement, but after viewing trees ranging from about 12 feet to 75 feet high, Middleton said the fire company decided to stick with its original second choice.

The fully-rounded tree would have had to have been removed from the Aloisio property within about a year anyway, since it was growing right up against the house, Middleton said.

Each year, the fire company seeks out a donated tree from Basking Ridge and nearby to place in downtown Basking Ridge. A public and in front of the Presbyterian church.

The fire company tradition has been to set up the tree right after Thanksgiving. "Basking Ridge Fire and EMS thank the Aloisio Family for stepping up to assist in keeping the tradition," Fire Co. spokesman Jack McGrath said on Friday.

In previous decades, the fire company also used to place smaller evergreens at locations along South Finley Avenue where there now are lampposts, Middleton said.

Eric van der Valk November 25, 2012 at 05:54 PM
Bishop Janes church is open for business selling trees again to year! All proceeds go to charity.
JaK November 25, 2012 at 06:22 PM
In the photo the tree appears to have an unique shape....no doubt it will beautiful!
V November 25, 2012 at 09:27 PM
What the hell is a holiday tree, are you kidding me?? It's a CHRISTMAS tree!
Danielle Presuto November 25, 2012 at 10:23 PM
Holiday tree? Why is it not a Christmas Tree? Are we also going to put up a Holiday Candelabra for our Jewish residents? I am so disappointed that this beautiful representation of a celebrated holiday, is being demeaned because we are afraid of offending someone. Really? If this offends, perhaps one must take a look at his or her life and reevaluate that which makes them angry. I respect all people and their beliefs, so why am I disrespected when a CHRISTMAS tree is referred to as a holiday tree. Not to mention, "O, Holiday Tree" just doesn't sound the same...
JaK November 26, 2012 at 04:23 AM
Viva la Christmas Tree! Why so politically correct? It's a Christmas tree! The community gathers around this tree on Christmas eve to sing carols, sip hot chocolate & enjoy listening to children and adults singing This is a wonderful tradition that makes Basking Ridge unique. Please do not diminish the meaning...or this tradition will become a hybrid of trying to please everyone with a politically correct event...boring! My opinion is politically correctness is phoney baloney anyway! Ending long standing traditional events and celebrations of the many to please the few? Nah...
V November 26, 2012 at 11:47 AM
Christmas is a national holiday. Holiday is not a national holiday.

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