From now until Christmas Eve you can get a free Christmas tree from a U.S. national park. As a part of the Every Kid in the Park Initiative, the National Park Service will be giving fourth graders a chance to get a free Christmas tree from a national park this Christmas season.
The Every Kid in a Park Initiative
The Every Kid in a Park Initiative is the National Park Service’s attempt at getting more children into the national parks and interested in getting outside and experiencing nature. The program targets a rather impressionable group of kids: fourth graders. Each year fourth graders throughout the United States are able to sign up for the program, which gives the child and their family free access to all U.S. national parks. Each child and their family get free access to hundreds of parks, lands, and waters for the entire year.
Additionally, fourth-grade teachers can also get a voucher for the year so that they can experience the national parks along with their students. They can take field trips or simply talk to their students about what you can do at the national park.
How to Get a Free Christmas Tree
Giving away a free year of access to national parks isn’t the only thing the Every Kid in a Park Initiative does. Each year the program also gives fourth graders a chance to get a free Christmas tree.
Fourth graders and their families can get a free Christmas tree from one of the 17 national forests in the U.S. Forest Service’s Eastern Region. The program lasts through December 24 and gives each fourth grader a free voucher for a permit. The permit, which gives them permission to harvest a Christmas tree from the national park, is given to them and they are given instructions are which trees they are allowed to harvest and where they can get them from. You can print a voucher from the Every Kid in a Park website.
If you don’t have a fourth grader but would still like to get a Christmas tree from a national park you can purchase one of these permits and cut a tree from the park yourself. However, there are still plenty of other ways to get a free Christmas tree this year as well.
Other Ways to Get a Free Christmas Tree
Having a fourth grader isn’t the only way you can get a free Christmas tree this holiday season. There are multiple local programs that will assist you in decorating for the holiday if you are in need. The Christmas Tree Project helps families in need throughout the United States get a Christmas tree and other decorations for the holiday. Military families can also receive free Christmas trees through the Christmas Spirit Foundation.
If you have heard of any other ways to get a free Christmas tree, please leave us a comment.
Photo: JOHNNY LAI