VAN BUREN COUNTY, MI – Dozens of volunteers gathered west of Kalamazoo on Monday to load hundreds of Christmas trees onto trucks, as part of annual efforts to brighten up the homes of those serving in the US military during the holidays.
Volunteers quickly loaded more than 350 trees onto two FedEx trucks at the Wahmhoff Farms nursery near Gobles on Monday, November 29, said event organizer Betsy Wahmhoff-Perales. These specific trees head to Rock Island Arsenal in Illinois and Fort Leonard Wood in Missouri.
This year donated trees came from Wahmhoff Farms, Badger County Christmas Trees, Armintrout’s Nursery and Old Grove Christmas Tree Farm.
The local loading event is organized in partnership with the national nonprofit Trees for Troops. The organization was founded in 2005 and delivers Christmas trees to military families every holiday season.
According to its Facebook page, Trees for Troops delivers thousands of trees each year. This year, the goal is to donate 14,500 trees to military families stationed at 77 military bases across the United States. More than 55 tree farms are contributing to this effort, donating thousands of trees. The cost of freight transportation is borne by the FedEx shipping provider.
The Wahmhoff Farms Nursery provides crews to load the trees and a consistent location for the event to take place each year. But it’s also a national event, with donation sites spread across the country.
For the event in Wahmhoff, donations come from farms throughout the region.
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