The story is R.J. Senior, president of the Sanger Chamber of Commerce in 1924, was wandering through grant grove. When he stopped to gaze upon the mighty general grant tree, a small girl approached and said, "What a lovely Christmas tree that would be." and she ran off. Senior never learned her name, but he never forgot her words.
On Christmas day, 1925, R.J. Senior and some friends trekked through a snow-covered dirt road to the base of the tree, placed some flowers, and held a short service. A few days later, the Sanger chamber sent a letter to president Calvin Coolidge.
In April of 1926, the general grant tree was named "The Nation's Christmas Tree," by the u-s department of the interior. In 1956 it became a national shrine. As part of the tradition, a wreath is laid at the base of the tree to honor our servicemen and women, who lost their lives in battle.
Today, active duty service-members, and veterans are among the hundreds in attendance.
"Some of the services we've had have been in the snow and those are always fun when we can come up here and be in the snow, but the ones where we get to come up with family are the most meaningful."
This is Raymond Greer's 25th trek to the Nation's Christmas tree, but for this young man, well he's been coming since he was a baby. This is Torsten, and he helped assemble this year's wreath.
"We had to put the branches in, tighten it, fill up the empty holes."
For some, there's no other way to usher in the Christmas season.
You have choirs, bands, and families and friends singing along. And you have a tree, all that's missing, are a few more decorations.
"Some years, you know, we've got some snow that decorates it, but a place like this speaks for itself."
Those were the jubilation singers performing at the ceremony. You also heard the Sanger High School choir. As you may already know, Sanger is "The Nation's Christmas Tree" city. The Sanger Chamber of Commerce hosts the trek to the Nation's Christmas Tree, and it's always held on the second Sunday in December.