Janet Somers and “Hanno,” her Great Dane, greeted workers from the County of Union at the Somers family home before the blue spruce was moved to the County Courthouse in Elizabeth.
ELIZABETH, NJ – The Union County Courthouse in Elizabeth has its new Christmas tree. A beautiful blue spruce tree donated by the Somers family of Union adorns the Courthouse Rotunda for the rest of December.
“This is a holiday tradition that many people in Union County look forward to,” said Freeholder Chairman Daniel Sullivan. “We appreciate the donation of the tree from the Somers family. It will make a great centerpiece for our Christmas carol sing-along on Thursday, Dec. 23rd.”
For 54 years, Union County has chosen an evergreen tree to stand in the Courthouse Rotunda during the holiday season. This year’s tree was donated by Linda and Janet Somers in memory of their father, Richard Somers, a long-time resident of Union.
“My father planted this tree more than 27 years ago,” said Janet Somers. “If he was still alive he’d like to give something back to help cheer up people, especially in these hard times.”
On Monday, Dec. 13, a crew from the Union County Shade Tree Bureau went to Union to cut the tree and load it onto a flatbed truck. When the tree reached the courthouse at 2 Broad Street in Elizabeth, a crane hoisted it onto the front steps.
“Moving the tree from the truck into the building is quite an event,” said Chairman Sullivan. “It takes a skilled crew with a lot of patience.”
Once inside the courthouse rotunda, the tree was lifted into a barrel stand weighed down with concrete. Then the process of adding lights and ornaments began. The tree required about 25 strands of lights. The public is invited to view the tree on weekdays until it is removed just before New Year’s Day.
The public also is invited to participate in a holiday sing-along on Thursday, Dec. 23, at 10:30 a.m., hosted by the Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders.