SAF Proudly Supports the 2021 US Capitol Christmas Tree

September 15, 2021

WASHINGTON— Annually since 1970, the USDA Forest Service has provided a tree from one of its national forests to appear on the West Lawn of the US Capitol building for the holiday season. The Six Rivers National Forest in partnership with nonprofit partner Choose Outdoors will bring this special gift from California to Washington, DC, for the 2021 holiday season with support from sponsors, including the Society of American Foresters (SAF).

Under the theme “Six Rivers, Many Peoples, One Tree,” the 84-foot white fir, nicknamed “Sugar Bear,” will be harvested from the Six Rivers National Forest on Oct. 25 and prepared for the 3,300-mile trek. The journey will include a series of community celebrations from Oct. 29 to Nov. 19 throughout California and across the US and culminate with the official tree lighting on the West Lawn in early December. Smaller companion trees also will be provided to decorate offices inside of the US Capitol building and other sites throughout Washington, DC, along with 15,000 handmade ornaments created by Californians.

“The USDA Forest Service is a proud, highly diverse organization made up of peoples who love caring for the land,” said Ted McArthur, forest supervisor for the Six Rivers National Forest. “Our theme ‘Six Rivers, Many Peoples, One Tree’ exists to highlight the cultural diversity of California national forests and its communities, and we take the responsibility of providing the People’s Tree seriously and with great heart.”   

As a Silver sponsor, the SAF team of Julie Woodward of Oregon SAF, Rachelle Hedges of California SAF, and Lori Rasor from National SAF staff are developing key messages and educational pieces to share with the general public along the tour route. In addition, SAF CEO Terry Baker will be traveling to California to assist in the tree harvesting on Oct. 25, and attendees at festivities throughout the month will have the opportunity to learn more about sustainable forestry management and SAF through postcards and brochures provided. 

“The US Capitol Christmas Tree has a rich history of connecting our nation's population to trees and forests,” Baker said. “Through participating in the journey of ‘Sugar Bear’ and its companion trees from California to our nation’s capital, SAF is eager to showcase the importance of scientific, sustainable management of our nation's forests.”

“The annual journey is only possible with the help of strong community partnerships throughout California and beyond state lines,” said Bruce Ward, president of Choose Outdoors. “We’re grateful for the time and resources the Society of American Foresters is providing to help make this the best year yet.”

The initiative was made possible with cash and in-kind contributions from companies large and small as well as volunteers locally and across America, who provide vital support of time and resources. The 2021 sponsors include Kenworth Truck Company, System Transport, ABC Sacramento, Spireon, Inc., PG&E, Hale Trailer, Mountain F Enterprises, Visit California, Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, Society of American Foresters, Truckload Carriers Association, Great West Casualty Company, Meritor, Inc., Coast Central Credit Union, Alaska Airlines, BT Metals, The Forest Foundation, Green Diamond Resource Company, Sierra Pacific Industries, Mendocino and Humboldt Redwood Companies, Trinity County, Verizon, LexisNexis VitalChek Network, Inc., The Joy Trip Project, Bass Pro Shops, BERG Co, Vesmir, Gene Lucas Community Center, Dick Taylor Chocolates, Humboldt Craft Spirits, Humboldt Marketplace, and ChicoBag & To-Go Ware. 

Follow the #USCapitolChristmasTree2021 project with the below accounts and hashtag: 
• Facebook: @USCapitolChristmasTree 
• Twitter: @USCapitolTree 
• Instagram: @USCapitolChristmasTree 
• #ManyPeoplesOneTree 

For news, events, tour information and to track the tree on its cross-country journey, visit

Download the Press Release Here.