News release

Boston Marathoner Donates 2015 Tree for Boston

A Nova Scotian who ran the 100th Boston Marathon is donating the Christmas tree that the province will give to Boston this year.

Bill and Andrea MacEachern of Lorne, Pictou Co., are the donors of a large evergreen that will be given as a gift to Boston as part of the annual thank you to the city for help provided after the 1917 Halifax explosion.

"On behalf of the province, I want to thank the MacEacherns for providing this special gift from Nova Scotia," said Zach Churchill, acting Minister of Natural Resources. "Mr. MacEachern came to know the spirit of Boston when he ran in its famous marathon and, today, he and Andrea are helping us to honour that spirit with this gift."

Mr. MacEachern competed in the Boston Marathon in 1996 on its 100th anniversary and placed in the top five per cent. The MacEacherns are donating their 15 metre (49 feet) white spruce that is about 72 years old.

"I remember how great the people of Boston were when I ran that race so Andrea and I are thrilled this year's tree for Boston is coming from our property in Pictou County," said Mr. MacEachern.
"We are proud to do this for Nova Scotia," said Ms. MacEachern.

About 2,000 people were killed and hundreds more left injured and homeless by the historic Halifax explosion. People in Boston were quick to provide medical personnel and supplies.

The Department of Natural Resources will oversee the cutting of the tree on the MacEachern's property during a public ceremony Tuesday, Nov. 17, beginning at 10:30 a.m.

More than a hundred school children will attend the tree-cutting ceremony along with Minister of Finance and Treasury Board Randy Delorey on behalf of the province, television meteorologist Cindy Day, New Glasgow Town Crier James Stewart and Santa Claus.

After the ceremony, the tree will travel to Grand Parade at Halifax City Hall for a final public farewell at 11:30 a.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 18. A large thank you book for Boston will be available at both ceremonies for Nova Scotians to sign. The province will then transport the tree 1,117 kilometres to Boston.

The tree lighting will take place on the Boston Common, Dec. 3, at a ceremony attracting about 30,000 people and broadcast live on the Boston ABC affiliate television station to about 300,000 viewers.

Details on this year's tree-cutting ceremony are at www.novascotia.ca/treeforboston and people can follow the tree's travels on Twitter @TreeforBoston and "like" the tree on Facebook at www.facebook.com/treeforboston.

The province encourages Nova Scotians to help search for the perfect Nova Scotia tree for Boston for future years. Anyone knowing of a white or red spruce or balsam fir that is 12 to 15 metres high (40-50 feet), with good symmetry, and easy road access, should contact their local Natural Resources office at www.novascotia.ca/natr/staffdir/offices.asp.

FOR BROADCAST USE:

A Boston marathoner from Lorne, Pictou County, is donating Nova Scotia's Christmas tree for Boston this year.

Bill MacEachern ran in the 100th Boston Marathon in 1996, placing in the top five per cent.

He and his wife, Andrea, are donating a 72-year-old, 15 metre (49 feet) white spruce.

The tree is a thank you to Boston for their help in the aftermath of the 1917 Halifax Explosion.

A public tree-cutting ceremony will be held on Tuesday, November 17th.

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