Only in Westby would you find a holiday Christmas Tree perched in the middle of Main Street, which is also a state and federal highway.

On Sunday afternoon, Dec. 17, more than 35 people from around the area congregated around the strategically placed tree for a photo opt, which left more than a few curious people asking just what in the world was happening in downtown Westby.

The special recreation event was set up by “History Alive Project” organizers Dave and Ruth Amundson along with Westby Area High School Educator Brian Huebner.

The Westby Police Department assisted with rerouting traffic for a short period of time so a live tree could be carted into the middle of the intersection at Main, West and East State streets allowing for a piece of history to be recreated in downtown Westby.

The original holiday tree in the middle of Main Street occurred in the mid-1920s during the Christmas season. The streets were not paved and the traffic flow was far less. Who put up the tree in the middle of the street 90-plus years ago remains a mystery and how long it stayed in place is also unknown.

The group photographed in the re-enactment picture consisted of “History Alive Project” high school students, teachers, business owners, community members people and even a dog joined the fun. The group posed around a tree donated by Village Market Floral then enjoyed homemade gingerbread cookies before returning home.

“It was so gratifying to see these many folks show up even though the Packer game was on,” HAP President Dave Amundson said.

“Experiencing this brought a piece of our community’s history truly alive and provided a different and fun way to experience and learn about our past history,” Ruth Amundson added.

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Westby Times editor

Dorothy Robson is editor of the Westby Times. Contact her at 608-637-5625.

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