Chandler's Unique Holiday Tradition:
The Tumbleweed Tree
Join us in celebrating a unique southwestern tradition that draws visitors from far and wide during the holidays. This community festival also includes the beautiful Parade of Lights. This year marks the 59th Tumbleweed Tree built in Downtown Chandler.
Saturday, December 5, 2015
Event Festivities - 4:30pm to 9pm; Parade - 7pm
Are you interested in volunteering? We have a great opportunity for anyone who needs community service hours or just want to help out a great event. Volunteer opportunities range from setting up, parade banner holder, activity booths or helping guests with event information.
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For more information or questions about this event, please call 480-782-2669.
Chandler Special Events Hotline
|HISTORY OF CHANDLER'S TUMBLEWEED TREE
A Community Tradition
This unique Chandler tradition began in 1957, when Chandler resident Earl Barnum raised the idea of a tumbleweed tree after he saw a similar one in Indiana built out of cone-shaped chicken wire with pine boughs stuck in the holes. Many members of the community helped create the first tree in Chandler using tumbleweeds that they gathered from around town. Little did these folks know that they were the first to do such a thing and that it would continue as an annual Christmas tradition from then on. In fact, Chandler is the only city in the southwestern United States that has such a tree.
How is it done?
First, members of the City's Park Operations Division gather tumbleweeds from the outskirts of the City. With Chandler's rapid growth and development, fewer stretches of empty land are within the City limits, which makes it harder to find tumbleweeds in large quantities. So, the Park crews must start collecting the tumbleweeds earlier each year. Nearly 1,000 tumbling tumbleweeds are collected each year and are used to adorn a 25-foot tall wire frame. Then, the tumbleweeds are sprayed with 25 gallons of white paint, 20 gallons of flame retardant and dusted with 65 pounds of glitter. The tree is later adorned with approximately 1,200 holiday lights that give it a spectacular look, day or night. The lighting of the Tumbleweed Tree draws a large crowd, with more than 12,000 expected to watch the Mayor and members of the City Council flip the switch to light this magnificent sight. The Tumbleweed Tree Lighting Ceremony and the Parade of Lights (starting at 7 p.m.) help to bring our community together to kick-off the holidays.