Rockefeller Center Tree Has Verona Roots


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The tree before its December 3 lighting.
The tree before its December 3 lighting.
Dan Sigafoos and Rachel Drosdick-Sigafoos, VHS '03, as the tree was being prepared for its journey to New York City.
Dan Sigafoos and Rachel Drosdick-Sigafoos, VHS ’03, as the tree was being prepared for its journey to New York City.
If you go to see the giant Christmas tree at Rockefeller Center every year, you might want to know that this year’s tree has a special connection to Verona.

The tree came from a Pennsylvania property that belongs to a 2003 graduate of Verona High School, Rachel Drosdick-Sigafoos, and her husband Dan Sigafoos. According to the Associated Press video below, a member of the Rock Center crew that scours the New York metro area for appropriate trees each year spotted the tree on his way to a football game. The rest, as they say, is history–and a lot of sawing and logistics.

“I am a big Christmas elf,” Drosdick-Sigafoos says in the video, noting that, because of its size, the tree was the only thing at her home that she had not decorated for Christmas. “This is beyond my wildest dreams that I could have this opportunity.”

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Drosdick-Sigafoos found her way to Pennsylvania after being an active participant in the VHS indoor and outdoor track teams and both a musician (French horn) and a member of the Marching Maroon & White’s Color Guard. She was graduated from Muhlenberg College in 2007 with a degree in French education. She married Dan Sigafoos in 2010 and received a Master’s from New England College.

The Drosdick-Sigafoos’ tree, now sturdily positioned behind the statue of Prometheus at Rockefeller Center, will be lit for the first time tomorrow, Wednesday, December 3. The ceremony, which runs from 7 to 9 p.m., is free and open to the public, though you’ll need to get there early to be part of it, given the usual crowd that the tree lighting and its entertainers attract. The tree stays lit until the evening of January 7, 2015. Once it comes down, the wood will be used to build homes for Habitat for Humanity in Pennsylvania.

Top photo copyright Claudia Brombauer. Second photo copyright Kathryn Drosdick. Both used by permission.

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