When the U.S. Capitol Christmas tree arrives in Washington from the Willamette National Forest in Oregon, it will have taken a nearly 2,800-mile journey from the Pacific Northwest to the Eastern Seaboard on a new Kenworth W990 truck, delivered by Central Oregon Truck Co.
“It is an honor for us to take the Capitol Christmas tree,” Central Oregon CEO Rick Williams told Transport Topics. “Kenworth wanted to have their new platform, the W990, involved in that, so we are driving the W990 from Oregon back to D.C.”
A team of drivers from the company, including Williams and business partner Phil Taylor, will deliver the tree.
“Hauling this precious cargo and the joy it brings to Americans across the country will certainly be one of the most memorable loads of a lifetime,” Williams added.
Central Oregon is a flatbed trucking company and runs Kenworths in its fleet, but it does not own the new vehicle. Instead, it was selected by the manufacturer.
“Kenworth is proud to once again play a part of delivering the ‘People’s Tree’ to our nation’s capital,” Marketing Director Kurt Swihart said. “The cross-country tour offers the opportunity for people to see this national symbol of celebration, and a Kenworth is the right truck for this important job.”
This is the fifth year that Kenworth is transporting the tree.
According to the U.S. Forest Service, the tree will be cut on Willamette’s Sweet Home Ranger District in early November and prepared for the expedition. The trip will trace the Oregon Trail in reverse and include a series of community celebrations throughout Oregon and across the nation. The journey will culminate with the official tree lighting on the West Lawn in early December.
“The annual journey is only possible with the help of strong partnerships throughout Oregon and beyond state lines,” said Bruce Ward, president of Choose Outdoors, nonprofit partner of the U.S. Forest Service. “We’re grateful for the time and resources these invaluable partners are providing to help make this the best tour to date.”
Since 1970, the U.S. Forest Service has provided the Christmas tree that is placed on the West Lawn.