Tuesday, May 17, 2022 |
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LIHU‘E — Swimmers transformed into lumberjacks Friday morning in Lihu‘e.
“The container came in at 10 a.m. and the kids have been busy ever since,” said Mokihana Aquatics coach Orlando “O” Anaya. “We’ll be here until 6 p.m. as long as we have trees.”
The refrigerated container which carried the Noble and farmed premium Douglas firs was parked at the end of Two Frogs Hugging building.
“That’s the only place we could plug in,” Anaya said. “This way the trees stay fresh until the customers pick them up.”
A steady stream of customers, many in pick-up trucks, kept parent volunteers of the Mokihana swimmers busy fetching trees, working on giving the trees a fresh cut to better take up water, and bundling the trees for transport.
“The swimmers took pre-orders for a lot of the trees,” Anaya said. “But each year, we bring in a limited amount for free sales to customers who come looking for trees.”
This year, he said after the pre-orders are accounted for, there are about six Noble firs left and about a hundred of the premium farmed Douglas firs in the six- to seven-foot heights.
Prices are $80 for the Nobles and $60 for the Douglas firs and are on a first-come, first-served basis.
“These are really good quality trees,” Anaya said. “This year’s crop looks really good.”
Matson Navigation Co. said the first small shipment of Christmas trees from the Pacific Northwest arrived Nov. 12 with those trees targeted for store displays and some of the Neighbor Island sales, the Associated Press reported.
Another shipment arrived last Sunday and other shipments are expected next weekend.
Matson Navigation Co., the largest shipping company which carries goods to Hawai‘i, has been transporting Christmas trees from the Pacific Northwest for more than a century from farms in Oregon and Washington. It estimates more than 100,000 trees are shipped each holiday season, the Associated Press reported.
Mokihana Aquatics — who had two of its swimmers, Kaitlin Santos, 16, and Kayla Ishida, 13, participating in the Ken Suenaga Invitational Swim Meet on Maui this weekend — has participated in selling Christmas trees as a fundraiser for its community swimming program for several years.
For more information, just drop by the Two Frogs Hugging parking lot between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m., or call Anaya at 821-0587.
• Dennis Fujimoto, photographer and staff writer, can be reached at 245-3681 (ext. 253) or dfujimoto@ thegardenisland.com.
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