Vendor finds solace at tree stand
In the unusually warm November air Tuesday, Lisa Newman untied her first shipment of Christmas trees. Her tree stand was open for business, and she was smiling.Last year, Lisa and her husband Paul brought their dream of re-opening a local Christmas tree outlet for Glenwood residents when they opened the Truly Valuable Christmas Tree lot near Cattle Creek Road between Glenwood Springs and Carbondale. They wanted to open the stand in town but were unable to find an appropriate spot. This year, however, with the assistance of Rite Aid, Lisa was able to bring the stand in town once again.”It’s the same as last year,” Lisa said. “Just without Paul.”Paul, her husband for 14 years, died unexpectedly in June of a heart condition. Since then, it’s been a pretty rough year for the 53-year-old landscape architect. Nonetheless, she’s been looking forward to the tree lot that brought her and Paul joy over the years.”We loved the tree lots,” Lisa said. “Paul would have been ecstatic about this one.”Lisa managed the True Value Hardware Store tree lot for several years before the building was torn down to make way for the new Glenwood Springs High School. Last year business was good despite being outside of town on Highway 82. The couple managed to sell all but 20 of the 300 trees they purchased. Lisa expects to do even better this year, now that she’s back in the center of town.And despite having to do it all herself.”I’m just going to carry on for the people,” she said. “It’s what Paul would want.”Rite Aid offered her a spot in their parking lot this season, right across the street from where she used to sell the trees at True Value. It’s like a homecoming for her in a way.”I’m so happy to be back here,” she said. “People had a hard time finding me last year, it was kind of obscure.”Her first shipment of North Carolina Frasier Firs arrived on Monday. She spent Tuesday untying them in preparation. She hopes that she will be able to sell as many as she used to at True Value, between 300 and 400 trees.The holiday season is a busy one for her. The stand will be open seven days a week, from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. all the way up to Christmas.”I was open on Christmas last year selling trees,” she said. “I’ll be here on Christmas this year, too, if I still have some trees to sell.”In Paul’s absence, she plans on working during Thanksgiving as well.”What else am I going to do? I don’t have anyone else,” she said doing her best to hold back the tears. “Maybe I’ll go to a restaurant and get some turkey to take home.”She enjoys the tree stand. She feels closer to Paul when she’s there. And she’s there for people who want a good tree for the holiday.Contact John Gardner: firstname.lastname@example.orgPost Independent, Glenwood Springs, Colorado CO
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