*The White House Christmas Tree was delivered to the Obama family last week, and Michelle Obama, her daughters, and almost 100 volunteers have been busy decorating the Douglas Fir for the festive season.
Grown in Pennsylvania and eighteen-and-a-half feet high, the tree has taken nearly four days to decorate, reports the UK’s Daily Mail.
Under this year’s “recycling” theme, the staff is using old magazines and newspapers to make sparkling wreaths and golden trees to be displayed in the White House’s Green Room.
Christmas decorations this year include 19 trees, each decorated in its own theme. One is covered with ornaments commemorating the U.S. military and topped with a hand-made dove of peace. Another tree bears gingerbread ornaments decorated by 300 military children.
A large figure of the Obama family dog made of 40,000 black and white pipe cleaners is also on display.
“It’s very cool and he’s very soft,” Michelle Obama told children attending a preview of the decorations.
Nearly 100 volunteers come to the White House every year to put up the decorations. Several said they had written to the White House several times before being chosen. One volunteer, Bob Lapp, 88, from Carlinville, Illinois, said the real Bo had visited his pipe cleaner version.
“I’m sure he’s seen it, because he’s walked through here many times,” he said.
As well as helping to dress their own tree, the Obamas will turn on the lights of the National Christmas Tree in Washington DC’s Presidents Park on Thursday (Dec. 9). The event is set to be streamed live on the Internet and will be hosted by the actor/rapper Common, while also featuring performances from BB King, Maroon 5, and Sara Bareilles.