Fallen tree changes Christmas tradition

The "Christmas tree" from Crowell Hall lawn was cut down during spring break.

The+newly+lit+Biola+Christmas+stands+tall+outside+of+Crowell+Hall.+%7C+Rachel+Adams%2FTHE+CHIMES
The newly lit Biola Christmas stands tall outside of Crowell Hall. | Rachel Adams/THE CHIMES

The newly lit Biola Christmas stands tall outside of Crowell Hall. | Rachel Adams/THE CHIMES

The newly lit Biola Christmas stands tall outside of Crowell Hall. | Rachel Adams/THE CHIMES

Anna Frost, Writer

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






The removal of the “Christmas tree” from the Crowell Hall lawn during spring break has left the future of Biola’s annual tree lighting ceremony up in the air.

TREE POSED POTENTIAL RISKS

The bark-beetle-infested tree was nearly dead and posed a potential risk of limbs breaking and falling into the nearby walkway, said senior director of facilities management Brian Phillips.

“It’s been a pretty steady state of decline over the last several years. It looks good when it’s lit up at night ‘cause all you see are the lights, but during the daytime it was looking like more of a Charlie Brown Christmas tree,” Phillips said.

The tree was cut down the morning of April 21. Matthew Weathers, assistant professor of math and computer science, posted a video on Facebook of the tree falling.

Alumni and Parent Relations is currently considering many possibilities of where and how Biola will hold the ceremony this December, said manager of advancement events Deannah Baesel. Possibilities include replacing the tree by Crowell, renting a tree or using an artificial Christmas tree.

“Ultimately, we want to keep Tree Lighting true to its traditions while accommodating as many guests as we can,” Baesel said.

Baesel is open to hearing feedback and ideas about the event from students, she said.

“I see huge potential to upgrade the Tree Lighting Ceremony to something that more of the Biola community can enjoy. Who knows what that will be right now, but I look forward to something great,” Baesel said.

This is not the first time the tree ceremony has changed, Baesel said. Biola has hosted the tree lighting ceremony for over 25 years, during which time the ceremony moved from under the Bell Tower to the Crowell lawn.

STUDENTS FRUSTRATED 

Students expressed frustration about the seemingly sudden removal of the tree.

“It was kind of upsetting for it to be cut down without an announcement,” said junior art major Erin Jeffries.

Jeffries said she understood that the tree was ill and needed to be removed.

“It didn’t look so great anyways … minor change, not a big deal,” Jeffries said.

For some, the tree held more meaning than just a piece of the Biola landscape. One of junior communication disorders major Kerry Paxton’s first dates with his now wife, Rosemead student Aundrea Paxton, was at the 2012 Christmas Tree Lighting with the Crowell tree. They returned to the 2013 ceremony and planned to make the event a tradition. Kerry said he was shocked to see the tree falling in Weathers’ video.

“Even though I’m sure they’ll have the program again, it won’t be the same,” Paxton said.

Leave a Comment

Leave a Reply

  Subscribe  
Notify of
Navigate Left
  • Fallen tree changes Christmas tradition

    News

    SGA Rundown: Senate cuts Biolathon funding

  • Fallen tree changes Christmas tradition

    News

    Watch out for those scooters!

  • Fallen tree changes Christmas tradition

    News

    Crime Log ― Nov. 6 – Nov. 13

  • Fallen tree changes Christmas tradition

    News

    Trespassing suspect arrested, tased in Sutherland parking lot

  • Fallen tree changes Christmas tradition

    News

    Midnight Madness 2018: The Red Sea parts again

Navigate Right
Fallen tree changes Christmas tradition