A large crane and long flatbed truck now are positioned at the site of the Shelton tree that will be cut down and transported to Rockefeller Center for the holiday season.
The heavy equipment was moved to Kazo Drive on Wednesday, with workers placing the crane in the yard and parking the truck on the street directly in front of the tree. Wooden and metal platforms also have been set up in the staging area.
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Click below to see more photos of the staging area being set up:
Plans are to cut down the tree at 9 a.m. on Thursday. It will be moved by crane to the waiting 115-foot-long truck and driven to Manhattan, where it later will be decorated and put on display.
The tree will be erected in Rockefeller Center on Friday. This year’s tree-lighting ceremony will take place on the evening of Wednesday, Dec. 4.
For much of the past week, tree workers could be observed methodically pulling back and tying branches on the tree with ropes to make the tree less wide so it’s easier to move. This “wrapping” process was completed on Saturday.
Tree is 76 feet high, weighs 12 tons
According to publicity material for Rockefeller Center, the Norway spruce is on the property of the Vargoshe family.
It is 76 feet in height and 47 feet in diameter, and weighs 12 tons. It is believed to be between 75 and 80 years old, and nearing the end of its life cycle.
People who have spoken to Vargoshe family members said the tree originally was used as a balled, live indoor Christmas tree by a previous owner of their Kazo Drive house.
After the holiday that year, the homeowner planted the tree in the front yard. It is believed this occurred in the 1950s.
‘Will symbolize Christmas for the world’
David Peters grew up a few houses away from the property where the tree is located.
“I would sit on that stonewall from kindergarten to high school, watching it get bigger and bigger,” said Peters, who came to look at the tree on Wednesday afternoon. He now lives in Trumbull.
“This tree will be symbolize Christmas for the entire world in a few more weeks,” Peters said. “It will be the most famous tree in the world in a couple of weeks. It’s one of the biggest things that could happen to this neighborhood.”
Cathy and Bill McDonald of Milford traveled to Shelton to check out the tree on Wednesday. “I have a thing where if the [Rockefeller Center Christmas] trees are from Connecticut, I want to see it,” Cathy McDonald said.
“To us, Shelton is Jones Tree Farm — so where better a place for the Rockefeller Christmas tree to come from,” she said.
Looking at this year’s selection, Cathy McDonald commented, “I can see why they picked it.”
‘A fantastic feat’
Nancy Gomes, who lives on Kazo Drive, called it “a beautiful tree. When we would walk past the tree we’d look at it because it is so tall.”
Neil Gollinger also was at the scene observing on Wednesday afternoon. “It’s a fantastic feat to be able to take this tree and move it,” he said.
“They’ll bring joy to the world with this tree,” Gollinger said.