State’s Christmas tree headed to Capitol

WSMV's Justina Latimer tells you the story behind this year's state capitol Christmas tree.
Published: Nov. 16, 2022 at 5:43 PM CST
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WSMV) - Tennessee’s Christmas tree will soon be on display at the Tennessee State Capitol after a Nashville family donated it after planting it two decades ago.

“It’s surreal watching. All of a sudden, it’s floating way like it’s got balloons or something. It was neat,” Joe Barry, who owned the tree, said.

All eyes were on this year’s State Christmas Tree Wednesday morning as it was lifted from the ground. Crews worked together to get the job done, and overall things ran smoothly.

“There was a lot of manpower,” Tennessee State Special Projects Manager Bill Tolbert said. “Most people think you just cut a tree and put it in a truck, and you drive away, but this is a thousand-pound tree.”

This year’s tree comes from the Barry family in Nashville. According to Joe Barry, they origainlly got this year’s tree for their daughter’s first Christmas.

“The tree was planted on our daughter’s upcoming first birthday. She was born on Dec. 28,” Suzie Barry said. “For her first official Christmas tree, we decided to get a tree we can plant and watch them grow together.”

Now that the tree has outgrown their yard and their daughter will be graduating from college, it’s time for a new chapter.

“As a mom, you just watch kids grow and change and it’s hard,” Suzie Barry said.

The family is hoping the tree will bring the same joy they experienced over the years to others visiting the Capitol.

The state’s official tree lighting ceremony will be held Monday, Nov. 28.