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Church State Issues

Downtown Chandler's Tumbleweed Tree nearly finished

Nov 28, 2014

Arizona Republic

Downtown Chandler's Tumbleweed Tree nearly finished

Religious monuments like this should be in churches or on private property. Not in government buildings where the 1st Amendment and Arizona Constitution specifically forbid mixing government and religion.


Downtown Chandler's Tumbleweed Tree nearly finished

Annie Z. Yu, The Republic | azcentral.com 6:01 a.m. MST November 28, 2014

Chandler Parks crews are nearly finished setting up the city's annual Tumbleweed Tree.

Those driving by the main downtown Chandler square can view the 30-foot white Christmas tree as the holiday season approaches.

As of early this week, the crews have finished shaping the tree and stuffing the wire frame with tumbleweeds. The tree now has flame retardant and white paint primer.

"Next Monday, we will finish (coating) it and throw some glitter at it," said Russ Lassuy, a park maintenance technician who has worked on the tree for the last 15 years. "(On) Tuesday, we'll put the lights on it and that should be it for the tree. And then we'll bring Santa's house down and the candlesticks."

Crews have been working every morning since mid-November. They stockpiled about 1,000 tumbleweeds this year for the tree, although they won't use all of them, Lassuy said.

Officials will light the tree during Chandler's annual Parade of Lights and Tumbleweed Tree Lighting Ceremony on Saturday, Dec. 6. Festivities begin at 4:30 p.m. with music, dance, pony rides, visits to Santa Clause and other activities. This year there will be an Ugly Sweater Contest, according to a news release.

The Parade of Lights will begin at 7 p.m. at the corner of Arizona Avenue and Frye Road and move north on Arizona Avenue, turn right on Buffalo Street, right on Arizona Place and end at Boston Street and Arizona Place.

The tree-lighting ceremony will take place at the conclusion of the parade at about 8 p.m. The tree is in the center of the Dr. A.J. Chandler Park on the west side of Arizona Avenue.

For the complete schedule, list of activities and more details, visit www.chandleraz.gov/tumbleweedtree.