State capitol tree coming from Antigo - WFXS, MyFoxWausau - News and Weather for Wausau, WI

State capitol tree coming from Antigo


Every year the search is on for the best Christmas tree for the state capitol.

For the second year in a row, it's coming from central Wisconsin and
will make its way from Antigo to Madison on Tuesday. It's 25 feet tall, almost 20 years old, and will soon sit in the state capitol.

"It's kind of heart warming to be selected," said Jim Draeger.

Draeger has been a Christmas tree farmer in Antigo for 40 years, and he says his prized pines are one of a kind.

"Never been picked to do something this high up, I guess that's the word," said Draeger.

Draeger is donating six trees all together. One, a 16-footer, will stand at the governor's mansion this holiday season.

State officials put the call out for a tree this summer and when they heard about Draeger's they came to check out his greenery in person.

"He looked at a bunch of the nurseries and and I didn't think anything of it. Then two weeks later he called me and said 'you have the best trees,'" Draeger told Newsline 9. “I said, 'I’m kind of proud and I’m glad you got good eye sight.'"

Draeger and his team will haul the trees down early Tuesday morning. They'll be on display later this year.

"Two trucks and two trailers will haul the six trees," said Draeger.

One will be for the capitol, one for the governor's mansion, and the other four will decorate the capitol square.

"That's why we are taking it down there to make sure it's in the best possible condition," said Draeger.

Seven hundred feet of gold garland, 2,400 multi-colored lights, and 1,400 handmade ornaments will decorate the tree in just a few weeks.

There's still time to submit ornaments for the tree. Donations are accepted by mail through Friday to the address below:

Claire Franz

DOA/Division of Facilities Management

17 West Main Street, Suite 119

Madison, WI 53703

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