Some garden centers in Mass. offer free Christmas trees to the military

The true spirit of the vacation is on display in central Massachusetts. Several local garden centers have partnered with a local non-profit group to provide free Christmas trees to members of our military. “We’re here. We care about them. We want them to know they exist and that we think about them,” said Joe Firmani, director of a nonprofit called Operation Service. During the Christmas season, he becomes one of Santa’s helpers by providing free Christmas trees to current veterans and military personnel. When it started as a family project in 2010, Firmani donated 20 free trees. Firmani said this year we are looking at 800. Operation Service has partnered with Cauley’s Garden Center in Fitchburg and The Gardeners’ Spot in Leominster. Any active duty member or veteran with a valid military ID can simply show up and pick up a tree. “We got comments from guys who had loved ones deployed and struggling and that $ 35 or $ 40 needed to be spent on groceries, medical bills or needed items,” Firmani said. Firmani and her team of volunteers also took that holiday spirit on the road, delivering trees to service members at Hanscom, Westfield and Fort Devens. “We appreciate them and we want them to know that we appreciate them, and they appreciate it in return,” Firmani said. “They appreciate the recognition that we think they are presenting themselves as the real volunteer, the real volunteer to give up 4 years of their life or more to protect and serve strangers. If he’s not a real hero, I don’t know not what it is. ”This tree program will run until December 19th. Click here for more information. You can also follow them on Facebook here.

The true spirit of the vacation is on display in central Massachusetts.

Several local garden centers have partnered with a local non-profit group to provide free Christmas trees to members of our military.

“We’re here. We care about them. We want them to know they exist and that we think about them,” said Joe Firmani, director of a nonprofit called Operation Service.

During the Christmas season, he becomes one of Santa’s helpers by providing free Christmas trees to current veterans and military personnel.

When it started as a family project in 2010, Firmani donated 20 free trees.

Firmani said this year we are looking at 800.

Operation Service has partnered with Cauley’s Garden Center in Fitchburg and The Gardeners’ Spot in Leominster.

Any active duty member or veteran with a valid military ID can simply show up and pick up a tree.

“We got comments from guys who had loved ones deployed and struggling and that $ 35 or $ 40 needed to be spent on groceries, medical bills or needed items,” Firmani said.

Firmani and her team of volunteers also took that holiday spirit on the road, delivering trees to service members at Hanscom, Westfield and Fort Devens.

“We appreciate them and we want them to know that we appreciate them, and they appreciate it in return,” Firmani said. “They appreciate the recognition that we think they are presenting themselves as the real volunteer, the real volunteer to give up 4 years of their life or more to protect and serve strangers. If he’s not a real hero, I don’t know not what it is. “

This tree program will run until December 19.

Click here for more information. You can also follow them on Facebook here.