With Christmas a mere six days away, the Emmaus Borough Christmas tree was again a topic of conversation at Monday night's meeting.
Councilman Mike Waddell, who heads the general administration committee, told council that he met with the borough's Shade Tree Commission to brainstorm options for how to handle the borough Christmas tree in the future.
They have come up with six ideas so far. Waddell stresses that these are merely things to think about to get the conversation going. Council will dig deeper into the issue in the coming year, he says.
- Maintain the status quo and go out and hunt for a 25- to 35-foot tree each year.
- Seek a smaller tree in the 15- to 20-foot range that might be found on a tree farm in the area.
- Grow a tree in the borough. Waddell says that this option probably wouldn’t work since the tree wouldn’t be ready for at least 15 years and the borough’s public works employees are not trained in caring for such trees.
- Plant a tree on the Triangle, another option that likely wouldn’t work since the tree well on the Triangle is about 20 feet deep.
- Move the borough's Christmas celebration. This could be done by planting a tree somewhere else in the borough, such as by the .
- Purchase an artificial tree, which would cost about $8,000 if purchased after the holiday season is over. Installing a live tree on the Triangle costs about $6,000 in man-hours.
Some residents feel that the tree currently installed in is ugly and that the borough needs to come up with a better plan for future trees.
Josephine Sadrovitz of 130 N. 4th Street addressed at its Dec. 5 meeting to offer some suggestions. “I’m here to talk about the controversy about the tree we have up,” she said. “I won’t give my opinion, but a lot of people are disappointed.”
She went on to suggest that the borough get three small trees for the kids to decorate or that the borough plant a new tree in the center of the Triangle. “So many people liked what we had,” she said.
At council’s Nov. 21 meeting Waddell suggested that the The borough didn’t find this year’s tree until a few days before Thanksgiving, which was too close for Waddell’s comfort.