First Baptist Church, Huntsville, AL
Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Tree Construction Facts

ABOUT THE LIVING CHRISTMAS TREE

The Living Christmas Tree has been presented each year (except one) since 1984 as a gift to Huntsville and the surrounding area of North Alabama and South-Central Tennessee. 

The steel framework of the Tree was manufactured by the Millard Heath Company of Denton, Texas.  The Christmas Tree structure supports over 150 singers, accompanied by a full orchestra.  The singers are supported on wooden platforms mounted to the steel structure as modified to fit into the church sanctuary.  The interior of the tree structure includes air-conditioning ducts to cool the singers during the performances. The star at the top of the tree is six feet in height and includes 455 miniature lights.

The lights on and around the Tree are controlled electronically through 75 individual control channels.  After the framework of the Tree is erected, the individual lighting circuits are installed.  The lighting system is operated manually during performances from two consoles located in the balcony of the Sanctuary.

The Living Christmas Tree is decorated with individual pieces of artificial greenery attached to the structure following the installation of lighting circuits.

TREE FACTS 
Weight - Approximately 6000 lbs.
Height, including star - 39 feet
Width - 30 feet
Pieces of structural steel - 337
Number of steel bolts - over 800
Number of greenery pieces - over 7500
Number of lights - over 13,000
Electrical power required - approximately 36 kilowatts

The Tree structure is erected and wired by dozens of FBC members over a period of two days.  The installation of tree lights and decorations is then accomplished by numerous other FBC members over a three-day period.