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For Immediate Release
Office of the First Lady
November 26, 2007

Mrs. Bush's Remarks Upon Receiving the 2007 White House Christmas Tree
North Portico

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      Holidays at the White House 2007

10:18 A.M. EST

MRS. BUSH: Good morning, everybody. This is the 42nd year that the National Christmas Tree Growers have given the White House a tree. And we're so thrilled that this beautiful tree and huge Fraser fir behind me -- you can see how big it is -- is from Mistletoe Farm in North Carolina, from Joe Freeman and Linda Jones are the growers of it, and it's a 19-year-old tree that he's been growing there at the farms for the last 19 years.

And so we're all thrilled that it's going to be here in the Blue Room. As you all know, we have to remove the chandelier from the Blue Room because the tree is so big. And the decorators are all inside right now, the florists who come from around the country to decorate every year at the White House. And so they'll be ready to set the tree up as soon as it gets moved in and to start decorating the tree.

And you all will hear more about the decorations later this week when you come back for the preview. But I will tell you that the tree will be decorated with about 300 -- a little over 300 ornaments from around the country. Over 300 artists have decorated these ornaments, and so you'll see them when you're here later this week for the Christmas preview.

But now I especially want to thank Linda. Thank you so much, Linda. I appreciate it a lot. And thank you, Joe, and congratulations on being picked by the National Christmas Tree Growers. And Beth, who's from the National Christmas Tree Grower's Association, happens to be a Texan. We knew her when George was governor and we would receive the tree then for the Texas Governor's Mansion in the Texas capital. So thank you very much also, Beth.

Thanks, and Merry Christmas, everybody. This is the first day of the season, the day after the Sunday of Thanksgiving weekend. And this is certainly the day we start around here.

So thanks, everybody. Happy holidays. Merry Christmas.

END 10:20 A.M. EST

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