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"TREES FOR TROOPS" PROJECT IS THIS WEEKEND
Source: National Christmas Tree Assn news release

This weekend, Nov. 30-Dec. 2, the public is invited to help support Trees for TroopsŪ, the national program that provides free, farm-grown Christmas Trees to armed forces members and their families each Christmas. More than 30 Christmas Tree farms and retail lots nationwide will serve as Trees for Troops Weekend hosts, offering consumers the opportunity to purchase and donate a tree to be delivered by FedEx to one of more than 60 military bases across the country.

"Each year, Trees for Troops counts on support from consumers to ensure we can reach our goal of delivering 18,000 Christmas Trees," said Nigel Manley, chairman of the Christmas SPIRIT Foundation. "Supporting Trees for Troops is an opportunity to thank America's troops and provide their families with joyful, traditional Christmas memories. The photos and comments we receive from the troops and families is truly heartwarming and let us know how much these trees mean to them."

A list of Trees for Troops Weekend locations is available at www.treesfortroops.org, and additional tree farms and lots across the nation will be accepting donations to help support the program.

Donations are needed even after Trees for Troops Weekend concludes, according to the foundation staff, and the distribution of Christmas Tree to military bases continues through mid-December.

"If you are busy this weekend, or if there are no Trees for Troops Weekend locations in your area, you can support the program by making a monetary donation at www.treesfortroops.org," said DeLaine Bender, foundation executive director. "The generosity of the public -- as well as donations from the Real Christmas Tree industry and FedEx -- make this program possible, and every donation helps."

Now in its eighth year, Trees for Troops is a program of the Christmas SPIRIT Foundation, working together with FedEx and the Real Christmas Tree industry. Since 2005, Trees for Troops has delivered more than 103,000 Real Christmas Trees to thankful troops and military families.

Each year, thousands of trees are donated by Christmas Tree growers in 26 states (through the National Christmas Tree Association and state and regional Christmas Tree associations) and consumers. FedEx and its team members generously provide shipping to more than 60 bases in the U.S. and Middle East, through FedEx Express air operations and the FedEx Freight trucking network.

About the Christmas SPIRIT Foundation

The Christmas SPIRIT Foundation is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt charitable organization that works to recognize and support the true spirit of Christmas for U.S. troops through the Trees for TroopsŪ program. The foundation was established in 2005 as the charitable branch of the National Christmas Tree Association and is among fewer than 5 percent of U.S. charities to be awarded the "Best in America" seal of excellence by Independent Charities of America.

Trees for Troops was a Top 20 Finalist in the 2012 Joining Forces Campaign, a White House initiative that honors exemplary support organizations for military families. To learn more, visit www.treesfortroops.org or call 636/449-5060.


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