Here’s an unofficial indicator that the economy is on its way back, courtesy of Kate Bogli, who co-owns with her husband in Granby: Christmas trees offered by the farm are selling faster than in years past.
“I’m taking it as a sign of better economic times,” Bogli said, half joking.
OK, the good folks on Wall Street may not take notice of the small financial improvements that are taking place on Salmon Brook Street, but East Granby and Granby residents searching for the perfect Christmas tree DO have to act fast, as the several places that offer trees in the two towns are selling out quickly.
Right off South Main Street in East Granby, the is selling trees 8 feet and under for $35, 9 footers for $50 and larger trees for $100.
The department started with 350 trees, the sale of which is one of two major fundraisers for the organization, according to member Matthew Spears, who added that about half of the stock had been sold as of late Friday evening.
“We’re on our way to selling out this year,” Spears said.
The fire department, which is also selling wreaths and kissing balls, is open for business from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sundays.
For over 30 years, the Granby Lions has sold Christmas trees as a major source of revenue.
This year, the club started off with 400 Canadian Balsam firs, all on sale at the Geissler’s Shopping Center, but supplies are dwindling.
For the first year ever, the prices changed slightly, as trees under 10 feet tall are still $30, while the price of trees 10 feet and over are now $40.
The price increase has done little to deter people from buying trees, as the number of trees has dwindled to the point that the club expects to be sold out by the end of the day today, according to fundraiser organizer Tom Sullivan.
“It is freaking unbelievable,” Sullivan said. “We’re just happy to help out the people of Granby by offering affordable Christmas trees.”
The Lions Club does far more than offer inexpensive holiday trees, as it donates the proceeds from its fundraisers to local food banks, fuel banks and the town of Granby’s department of social services.
“We’re the best-kept secret in the town of Granby,” Lions Club member John Spatcher said.
Manned hours are 9 a.m. to dark, though the Lions Club operates on the honor system after hours, as people can still pick up trees and leave the money in a drop-off box.
At Maple View Farm, just 75 trees remained as of Saturday morning. The cost of the trees increases incrementally by $10 per foot, with 4 to 5 footers started at $20, going all the way to $60 for 8 to 9 footers, Bogli said.
The farm is also selling gift certificates for its winter barn fun fest for 6 to 12 year olds that starts in January. The certificates cost $50 for four, two-hour sessions, according to Bogli.
For more information, visit www.mapleviewfarm.com.