Tree sale fun for scouts, beneficial for their wallets
Members earn 'dollars' toward supplies, trips by working lot
Boy Scout Troop 73's Christmas-tree lot is open for business.
The Tri-Village-area troop unloaded a delivery of 420 trees from the Feisley Tree Farm in Belmont last week.
The lot, located at Midas Auto Service Center, 2087 Riverside Drive in Upper Arlington, is open from 5 to 8 p.m. weekdays, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturdays and 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sundays while the trees last.
"We've got Scotch pine and blue spruce trees and a lot of great Fraser firs," scoutmaster Hal Schofield said. "We stay open until we sell them out. Usually we just about sell every tree."
Depending on their size, the trees sell from $35 to $80, he said.
The tree sale serves as the troop's main fundraiser, Schofield said.
"The boys are assigned to work at the lot and they get a salary just like a regular job," he said. "We pay them in 'Boy Scout dollars,' which they use to help pay the cost of scout activities," including summer camp, ski trips or the adventure trips older scouts take every couple of years.
Proceeds from the tree sale also help to defray the cost of supplies and equipment and other expenses for the troop, Schofield said.
Working at the tree lot requires responsibility of the scouts, but it's also a lot of fun, he said.
"Who wouldn't enjoy spending time at a Christmas-tree lot standing around the fire?" Schofield asked. "The customers are always in a good mood."
On a recent evening, scouts James Ely, 12, and Sam Carter, 11, were doing just what Schofield described: keeping warm by the fire.
"It's a lot of fun to sell Christmas trees because it gets you in the holiday spirit," James said. "Plus we get to earn some scout dollars."
"We've already sold three tonight (in little more than an hour)," Sam said. "You just try to be helpful to the customers and help them find what they want."
Most of the customers come from Grandview, Upper Arlington and Hilliard, Schofield said.
"We get most of our business on the weekends, but some people, especially those from Hilliard, will stop by on their way home from work," he said.