New Bedford’s Christmas Tree a Gift of Love From a Westport Couple
New Bedford's official Christmas tree was recently hoisted into place, secured to the Main Branch of the New Bedford Free Public Library on Purchase Street, and decorated by the Department of Infrastructure.
It is truly a sight to behold.
The giant spruce is a gift of love from a Westport couple who planted it after they were married 25 years ago.
Julie Reitzas said she and J.T. Butler planted the tiny tree in a pot when they moved into their home on Swift Road in Westport in 1997. Reitzas said they put lights on the tree the first year. The following spring, the couple transplanted the tree outside.
Reitzas told New Bedford Cable Network that after more than two decades, she and Butler decided the tree had grown too big for their property and sought to donate it as a community Christmas tree.
"Well, it was time to go and it should go somewhere that it looks nice," she said.
There were no takers for the tree last year, but Reitzas said this year, New Bedford jumped at the offer of the tree.
In honor of Arbor Day, Nadeau Tree Service of Westport donated its time and service to cut and transport the tree to New Bedford. It took about half an hour to haul the beautiful spruce from Westport to downtown New Bedford.
The removal of the tree and its trek to New Bedford was captured and documented by New Bedford Cable Network. The official lighting ceremonies for the downtown New Bedford Christmas tree were held on December 10, 2022.
Reitzas told NBCN that she hopes the tree will "bring joy" to the community.
"Maybe we'll plant another one, and it will get donated in another 25 years," she said.
New Bedford's Christmas tree is a gift of love from some neighbors in Westport. Now isn't what the Christmas season is all about?
The tree will remain lit on the steps of the library until after New Year's Day.