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The "Grizwald" family Christmas Tree
posted December 3, 2007
COLUMN – With the
beginning this past weekend we headed off to find what my wife calls
the “Clark Grizwald family Christmas Tree”. And there is no better
place to do that than Charlie and Nancy Mills’ Clarks Hill Christmas
Tree Farm located just off Garrett Road on Bennie Dorn Road in the
western part of Edgefield County.
After arriving at the vast rolling hills of the farm covered in a wide
variety of trees and sizes the first stop is the refreshment shed where
the aroma of hot chocolate and cider fill the air. And what hunt for
that perfect tree would be complete without a big cupful of boiled
peanuts dipped right out of the steaming pot?
Then comes the family battle, what kind and how big this year’s will
tree be. Our youngest daughter Christin insists that we have a large
tree and points out a thirty-footer. Okay, now I am starting to see why
my wife sees a similarity of Chevy Chase and the Christmas Vacation
My wife and oldest daughter Leia point out several in the six to eight
foot range. Most are perceived with a Goldie Locks attitude of too
thin, too short, or a combination of both.
Below: The Clark Hill Christmas Tree Farm
After a near hour
walk across the farmland, and my failing knees, we
found the perfect tree, an eleven-foot Carolina Sapphire and the
heavens opened up and shown down a great light upon the tree. Well, not
really, but I figured I needed to keep in step with the Grizwald
Christmas Vacation theme.
An attendant came and cut our tree down and placed in on one of the
many the open trailers pulled behind tractors transporting families to
and from the fields. Just as the tree fell came the usual response of,
“I don’t know, maybe that tree (pointing to another), might be better.”
One of the many advantages of choosing a tree from the Mills’ farm is
being assured of the freshest tree possible. Having your tree cut at
the time of its choosing and getting it home and in the stand will make
it longer lasting and more likely to continue to draw water from the
It is important that you keep your tree watered and to place it a safe
distance from heat sources or fire places to prevent fires.
So the tree was
loaded atop of our Tahoe and again I began to see my
wife’s claim of the Grizwald Christmas Tree as the top of the tree hung
well beyond the back of the truck as we traveled back to our home.
After placing the tree in its stand it was time to decorate. My lovely
bride, who has annually - for the last eight years - purchased “Santa
Heads” from The Christmas Store in Highlands, North Carolina as if she
was a headhunter in the Congo (that seems sadistic in my mind for some
reason). She makes sure each has a notable place on the tree.
When all was said and done the lights are plugged in and it was time to
enjoy the family Christmas Tree, beheaded Santa’s and all.
At least, for the time being, I am able to convince my wife that we do
not have to have 40 million light bulbs stapled to our rooftop that may
interfere with airline traffic control or overload the nearest nuclear
Somehow I feel that day coming as well.
Clarks Hill Christmas Tree Farm
Open daily from 2 - 5:30 pm Monday - Friday
Saturday 9 am - 5:30 pm
Sunday from 1 - 5:30 pm
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