Lot at George Rogers Park has been around for 65 years

by: VERN UYETAKE - Trey Cox, a scout with Troop 127, answers questions about a tree from Monica Glumbik and her children, Ty and Maya. The troops sales lot at George Rogers Parks has been in operation since 1947.

In the year 1947, Harry S. Truman was president, Joe DiMaggio was MVP of the American League, and Jackie Robinson broke the color line in Major League Baseball.

Lots of other good stuff happened in that year, too.

One of them was the start of the Christmas tree lot at George Rogers Park operated by Lake Oswego’s Boy Scout Troop 127. It was the beginning of a great tradition that is still going on today, as the lot continues to attract families that have been getting their Christmas trees there for generations. Such success deserves an explanation.

“The demographics of Lake Oswego are very supportive of Scouts,” said Scoutmaster Mark Hoyt. “We’ve sold untold thousands of Christmas trees. It’s not uncommon to have some old grizzled guy come by who was a scoutmaster here in 1957. We get families from all over, including Salem, Vancouver and Battle Ground. We’re a generational troop. Sons come here because their grandfathers came here.”

Troop 127 is already developing the next generation of Christmas tree sellers and buyers. The Martin family was out on Monday night to purchase its Christmas tree, which the young family has been doing for many years. The Martins took their time selecting one, because getting the right Christmas tree is an important decision.

“We’ve been coming here to get our Christmas tree ever since our boys were born,” said Inkeri Martin, mother of the family.

On the lot for the very first time was new Boy Scout Sterling Hedman, 11, who was eagerly helping shoppers find the right tree and then helping them haul it to their cars. The reason he was there is that Troop 127 is a great Boy Scout troop.

“I heard so many good things about it,” said Scott Hedman, Sterling’s dad. “I knew I wanted my son to be part of it, even though we live in Portland.”

In its 85-year history, Troop 127 has done a lot more than sell a lot of Christmas trees.

“We’ve produced 400 Eagle Scouts,” Hoyt said. “This troop has been able to give young men some amazing life skills. Scouts from this troop have become captains of industry and members of city commissions all over the far-flung USA. They learn so much, and they have fun doing it.”

The Christmas trees pay for a lot of fun. Hoyt said that funds from the tree sale play a major role in the troop’s activities throughout the year.

“It pays for our summer camp, our Junior and Senior Adventures and the running of the troop,” he said. “It’s also being used to save up money to help us buy a trailer for hauling gear.”

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