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100 Christmas trees donated to families in need in Monticello

Published: Dec. 2, 2020 at 5:51 PM EST
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MONTICELLO, Fla. (WCTV) - If you’re pining for a feel-good Christmas giving story, you’re in luck: On Wednesday, nearly 100 Christmas trees were donated to families in need.

Perfect Plants in Monticello put out a call Tuesday night saying they had trees to give away in the community and, less than 24 hours later, the call went farther and faster than ever could have been imagined.

Alex Kantor, the owner of Perfect Plants, says they didn’t expect all of the trees to be accounted for so quickly, but says it really speaks to how ready people are to feel some holiday joy.

“Christmas trees, they mean a lot to some people,” Kantor said. “With COVID, a lot of people may be out of work or may not be able to afford the trees.”

Of the 100 trees set to be donated, 50 were loaded Wednesday. All of them headed to local heroes.

“We get various different people that are just so overwhelmed with it,” said Phillip Todd with Holidays for Heroes. “Some of them tell us, ‘Without you guys, we wouldn’t have a tree this year.’”

Holidays for Heroes has been providing free Christmas trees for local veterans for five years. But, this season, the need is even greater.

“It means a lot more to them,” Todd continued. “And we focus on our veterans, they don’t always get the recognition that they deserve, and we just, we like to give something back to them. They were willing to go off and give everything for us. The least we can do, especially during the holiday season is give out Christmas trees.”

Kantor says they held a similar giveaway a few years ago and it showed what a difference a small sprucing can make.

“It spurred some parents to do some things in the home and to decorate and have some presents that they wouldn’t normally have done, and it all started around the Christmas tree,” he said.

While all the trees in Monticello are now accounted for, there will be more tree giveaways across the Big Bend this weekend, with Holidays for Heroes holding events Saturday at Lake Ella and at the VFW in Perry. Both events start at 9 a.m. and run until supplies last.

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