After A Moment In The Spotlight, RI Statehouse Christmas Tree Comes Down

Dec 18, 2017

The Christmas Tree in the Rhode Island Statehouse will be replaced after its appearance made national headlines. The 25-foot Fraiser Fir appeared to be losing its needles at an alarming rate after sitting in marble entryway for more than three weeks.

A week ago, the Associated Press released a story which started with the words “The Christmas tree in the rotunda at the Rhode Island Statehouse is dead.”

The RI Statehouse Christmas tree in the minutes before it was taken down.
Credit John Bender / RIPR

After making the local TV news rounds, the quirky holiday story did what these things do in 2017, it went a just a little viral. The New York Post picked up the story with the headline: “this is the saddest state capital Christmas tree.” The story was accompanied by a photo of an especially bare branch of fir tree.

After initially saying they would not replace the tree, the Governor’s office said the fir would go. The tree was removed Monday afternoon.

Rhode Island’s statehouse tree received national attention several years ago, after the Governor at the time called it a “holiday tree” instead of a Christmas tree.