MISSOULA — The Missoula Lions Club -- a staple in Christmas tree sales in the Garden City since 1944 -- is back for their 76th sale, despite the uncertainty brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Like most Christmas tree lots, the Lions Club is dealing with a tree shortage which is the result of far fewer trees planted during the recession of 2008.
This is when those trees are ready to be harvested, and they're just aren’t as many. But don’t worry, the Lions have just enough to spruce up Missoula area homes.
All of the proceeds from the trees that are bought from the Lions Club are used to purchase eyeglasses, and eye screening equipment for children.
The Lions Club raises about $15,000 to $20,000 each year, enough to donate to the Poverello Center, scout troops, senior projects, and food banks.
Missoula Lions Club president David Gray says that after a successful start to their sale, they might be able to do even more this year.
“We had a huge opening weekend. We sold thousands of dollars more trees that weekend than we have ever sold, and we sold out of all of our large trees in four days which has never happened in the history of this sale,” Gray said. “And I think this year people really want to have a celebration, and they just came out in mass right after Black Friday.”
The Lions say they still have trees, and they’ll be selling them until they’re all gone. The trees are for sale daily at the Missoula County Fairgrounds from 11 a.m. until 8 p.m.