Klaipeda news in English
Klaipeda Christmas tree prepared for the Holidays
Last Friday the 11 meter-high Christmas tree grown in the yard of Lolita ir Albinas Gedminai on Upelio St. 24, was cut down and brought to Teatro square. The tree will become this year’s Christmas symbol of Klaipeda.
It is the second year that a live tree, grown and given to the city as a present, selected through a competition, is decorated on the main square of the port city. This year the competition included seven different spruce trees. The citizens voted to choose the most beautiful tree in the finale of the contest.
Albinas Gedminas who grew the tree said that he bought the tree in Palanga together with his wife at the old market on the occasion of their wedding. The man could not recall when exactly that was. “Ask my wife,” he laughed. Mrs Gedminienė did not witness the fall of the tree, however, because she was at work. The newlyweds first planted the tree in the collective gardens in Dituva. The tree was replanted by their house on Upelio St. 32 years ago, as other plants were stolen from the collective garden.
“Every year on Christmas we would decorate the tree. Our children grew up with it. Last year while decorating the tree I fell down. Luckily, I was able to grab onto the branches and did not get hurt. The huge tree causes us a lot of worry during every storm. It sways in all directions and we are terrified of it falling down on the house or the electrical cables. So when someone suggested to wife to cut down the tree and decorate it for Christmas in the city I agreed. I don’t feel sorry, if it’s for the city. Let the children be delighted. I will plant a new spruce in its place,” Mr Gedminas said.
The mayor, Vytautas Grubliauskas, saw the fall of the tree, thanked Mr Gedminas for the beautiful evergreen and promised to gift the couple with a smaller tree in place of the fallen one.
The employees of JSC „Klaipedos zeldiniai“ helped to safely cut the spruce tree on Upelio Street. According to the director of the company, Gediminas Valasinas, carefully cutting down such a huge tree in the limited space of a detached house, close to power poles and other buildings was not an easy task even for the professionals.
Valašinas named the nuances they had to deal with while cutting the tree, “It was lucky that the weather was good – it wasn’t windy. Wind usually complicates the work. We disconnected the electricity supply temporarily anyway, just to be safe. This year we were better prepared: we used a more powerful crane with a longer arm and a crane tower. It was very important to locate the gravity centre of the tree and to attach the tree correctly. It’s not as easy as it may look. The tree can have internal, invisible injuries. It can break and so on.”
The 11 meter-high 2 ton evergreen was successfully transported to Klaipėda city’s Teatro square. According to the head of the creative department of the public company “Klaipedos sventes” Dalia Griksaite, the live tree will only be decorated by garlands. “We don’t want to mask the natural beauty of the live tree by man-made ornaments. We are led by the example of many big Western European cities, where they cherish the traditions of decorating the squares with a moderately and humbly adorned live tree. We are also strive to make the most beautiful winter holidays as communal as possible,” said Griksaite.
The grand lighting of the Christmas tree will take place on December 2nd at 5 pm and will delight citizens until Three Kings' Day (January 6th).
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