In Killearn, there’s one place you can buy a Christmas tree and support a great cause. For years at Killearn United Methodist Church (KUMC), Troop 23 has made selling Christmas trees their biggest fundraiser of the year. By selling trees, the boys invest in future summer camps, weekend hikes, and other Scout related activities. Troop members are given credit depending on how much time they spend selling trees.
On the day after Thanksgiving, the first shipment of trees arrived from North Carolina and Troop 23 set up its Christmas tree lot on KUMC’s property. The trees will be sold until they run out, typically around December 10. This year, Troop 23 expects to sell around 850 trees.
Troop 23 sells Christmas trees Monday – Friday: 4 PM to 9 PM, Saturday: 9 AM to 9 PM, and Sunday: noon to 6 PM.
Nearing the end of his first shift, Brandon Howes (pictured to the right) said he likes selling trees because he enjoys working with people a lot. Brandon also mentioned that he’s learned that the people who buy trees from Troop 23 have been doing so for a long time. Brandon remembered selling a tree to a lady who said that she’s been getting her Christmas trees from Troop 23 for longer than Brandon’s been alive. Customer loyalty is a huge part of Troop 23’s sales. To encourage customer loyalty, Troop 23 mails discounts to all their customers from the previous year just before they start selling.
Mr. Kevin Taylor, a father to one of the scouts, said that, despite some of the recent publicity on Scouts, the organization is pivotal to these kids’ formation. Specifically, he said that Scouting is all about building character, learning leadership skills, and instilling the values of work ethic and perseverance. Through the years, Mr. Taylor has noticed that the kids who stick with the program – untill they become an Eagle Scout – build a foundation that serves them a lifetime.
As it pertains to selling trees, Mr. Taylor says that the boys learn customer service skills. Boys are taught that if someone wants to see every tree on the lot, then you must show them every tree on the lot. Even when they are not working with customers, scouts stay busy by cleaning up the lot and organizing the inventory of trees.
Something seems clear from this community crew: if there is a good place where boys can be boys, then that’s where boys can learn to become good men.
Trees can be bought at the following prices:
|Troop 23 – Tree Price List|
|5′ – 6′||$45|
|6′ – 7′||$60|
|7′ – 8′||$70|
|8′ – 9′||$90|
|9′ – 10′||$110|
|10′ – 11′||$125|
|11′ – 12′||$150|
*Troop 23 wanted to give a special thanks to Killearn United Methodist Church for providing the space to sell trees. Finally, Brandon Howes is an awesome guy.