The Story Behind This Year’s Chicago Christmas Tree

(CBS) — Chicago’s official Christmas tree will be cut this morning, and Friday it will arrive in Millennium Park.

WBBM’s Steve Miller has the story behind the 62-foot-tall Norway spruce.

“My husband used to sit and say, ‘That would be a beautiful tree for Christmas somewhere,’” says Darlene Dorfler of Grayslake.

So, she and her son and his girlfriend submitted an entry, and their tree was chosen over 70 others to be Chicago’s Christmas centerpiece.

All the prep work has been done to move the tree to the city.

“It’s just amazing to look at it now. It’s like it folded all its branches up and it’s standing there like that now,” says Dorfler, who will be on hand for the lighting of the tree.

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Crews prepares a Norway spruce before it is cut down in Grayslake; it will be transported to Chicago on Friday. (courtesy: Dorfler Family)

She says she will be in Chicago for the lighting. This year’s ceremony will be at 6 p.m. on Friday Nov. 17 – a bittersweet date for Dorfler, a widow whose husband passed more than a year ago.

“When they said the 17th, I thought, ‘My gosh, that would’ve been our anniversary, and it would’ve been 55 years.”

Dorfler thinks the Norway spruce was planted in the lot she now owns in Grayslake in the 1930s.

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The official Chicago Christmas tree is bundled for transport. (courtesy: Dorfler Family)

So, how will she feel when she looks out her window and can’t see that tree anymore?

“I think it’ll be OK,” she says. “It blocked my view from seeing the other street.”

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