GREEN COVE SPRINGS, Fla. -- Whether it’s to honor a military service member, support a community organization or remember a loved one not with us this holiday season, the Parade of Trees draws a crowd to Spring Park.
“I think it’s wonderful,” said Kathy Guhl, who visits the park every year. “We had a friend who has a memorial tree that we were surprised about. We didn’t know the family had done that; that was really great.”
The Parade of Trees started in 2003, just after the beginning of the Iraq War as a way to honor service members away from home during the holidays. The tradition has grown over the years from 30 trees to more than 150. While businesses and community organization are responsible for a part of the decorated trees, most are sponsored by families in honor or in memory of a loved one.
“This is a Clay County event. We just happen to be in Green Cove Springs,” said Art Yeaman, with the Greater Green Cove Civic Association. “It’s a very memorable place, right off the river.”
There’s so much interest, the group started allowing people to register virtual trees this year. Yeaman said there’s already a waiting list for next year. The Parade of Trees runs through New Year’s Day at Spring Park, in Green Cove Springs.