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A Tree for Christmas!

A special Seeley school project made possible by
a gift from Art Ortenberg and Liz Claiborne


When the trees were all ready, they were delivered to businesses around Seeley Lake.
At right above, Roger Johnson accepts the tree at Pyramid Mountain Lumber, Inc.

Seeley Swan Pathfinder
December 10, 1998

A special Christmas greeting hit town Monday when kids from Seeley Lake Elementary made the rounds to 50 businesses, leaving a special gift that warmed the hearts of business owners.

Self-standing plywood Christmas Trees, custom painted with designs requested by several businesses, were delivered Monday when the student population at Seeley Lake Elementary was split up into eight groups to make the deliveries.

Business owners or representatives were asked to accept the tree outside where the students sang Christmas carols for them.

The unusual Christmas project took shape when the school was given a gift of $1,000 from Art Ortenberg and Liz Claiborne (The Ortenbergs) with a request the money be used to promote community spirit.

Shirley Johnson, Seeley Lake Elementary principal, said a committee of three teachers came up with the idea. Seeley-Swan High School students cut the trees from plywood sheets, and for the past couple weeks, the elementary school has been a beehive of activity, resembling Santa's workshop of busy elves, where every class took part in painting and decorating the trees.

After asking each business if they preferred any special designs, the students accomodated wishes like cars & trucks on the Glenn's Automotive Tree, the popular Chicken Pirate Logo of DF Chicken, and axes on Pyramid Mountain's tree.

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