As more than 50 people look on, “Daddy Al” and Susan Dick’s huge Norway Spruce is lowered onto the flatbed that will carry it to Rockefeller Center, where it will be the centerpiece of Christmas celebrations that begin in early December. Inset, two woodsmen from Lynn Warren Lawn Maintenance & Landscaping, Newburgh, attach the harness to the spruce – midway up and at the bottom. Once cut, the crane lifted the harness, and the tree swung – to “ooohs!” from the crowd, and some applause – and laid in on the flatbed. The rig will be parked outside New York City until Saturday, when the lighter weekend traffic will enable it to be placed alongside the skating rink at Rockefeller Center, 22 acres that stretch between 48th and 51st streets and Fifth and Sixth avenues, about a three-minute walk from St. Patrick’s Cathedral. This tree, on Route 23 in West Oneonta, is the second Town of Oneonta fir tapped for the Big Apple festivities in four years; in 2016, Graig and Angela Eichler, Country Club Road, provided a record-tall 96-foot tree. (Ian Austin/AllOTSEGO.com)
By LIBBY CUDMORE • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com
ONEONTA – It could be the biggest secret in Greater Oneonta – perhaps 100 feet tall.
Crews from Lynn Warren Lawn Maintenance & Landscaping in Newburgh have been at the 3851 State Highway 23 property since Monday, prepping the tree owned by “Daddy Al” Dick.
In much the same way, crews prepped Angie and Graig Eichler’s 94-foot tall spruce before sending it to be the 2016 Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree.
In an interview, Graig Eichler said there’s a good reason it’s so hush-hush: “It’s to protect the tree, and to protect the family so there’ s no trespassing or vandalism to the tree.” Rockefeller Center provided 24-hour security was the tree’s been chosen and certainly after it’s announced.