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Holiday Kids' Tree Lighting Ceremony set for December 1

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OLYMPIA— Preparations are underway for the state holiday tree, the evergreen that adorns the Capitol Building rotunda each year, to arrive on the Capitol Campus and receive its customary decorations.

For the second year in a row, the Weyerhaeuser Company is donating the tree. The 25-foot Noble fir will make its formal public debut with the traditional lighting ceremony in the rotunda at 6 p.m. Dec. 1.

This year's tree features "Friends of the Forest" décor, including stuffed ornaments of animals native to Washington state and 7,000 new LED lights, provided by the Association of Washington Business (AWB). In addition, through AWB donations, approximately $400 worth of stuffed animals, as well as a snow sled, rocking horse, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, stuffed bears and toy soldier and drum will adorn the base of the tree.

Since 1989, AWB has sponsored the Holiday Kids' Tree Project, which collects donations to give to rural fire districts across the state as a way to ensure families in need are supported during the holiday season.

At the Dec. 1 lighting ceremony, the program donations will be presented to fire department officials from Chelan, Grant, Grays Harbor, Lewis, Mason, Okanagan, Spokane, Thurston and Walla Walla counties, who will distribute the gifts to families in need in their areas.

When the tree comes down at the end of the holiday season, AWB donates the toys from the tree, along with books, to patients at children's hospitals.

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