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Where to retire your Christmas tree in Langley

Some community groups will still be holding by-donation disposal events under COVID-19 restrictions
There will be a contactless bottle drive and tree chipping for the D.W. Poppy dry grad 2021 at the school, which is located at 23752 – 52nd Ave., on Sunday, Jan. 3, from 10:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. (Lisa Butt/special to Langley Advance Times)

There will be a D.W. Poppy dry grad tree chipping and bottle drive, but it was a near thing, according to Tina Upton, chair of the Langley school’s dry grad committee.

“It was a touch-and-go situation,” is how Upton described the scrambling to organize an event under COVID-10 protocols that require protective measures including masks, limiting the number of people in a gathering, and requiring social distancing, among other things.

It means volunteers can’t be sorting bottles on a table because they would be too close to each other, and people who drop off trees can’t get out to unload them, Upton explained.

Organizers also weren’t sure they would have a tree chipper available.

Upton said the members of the committee pulled together to make it happen.

“Everyone has stepped up. It’s going to work out great,” she predicted.

Central Valley Tree and Arborist Services Ltd. is donating their time to the fundraiser, and won’t be on-site at all times in order to keep numbers down.

“People can’t get out of the car and all of our volunteers have masks,” Upton advised.

Langley Bottle Depot Return-it recyclers on Industrial Avenue have provided large bags so bottles don’t have be sorted at the drop-off, but simply placed in the bags.

“Usually they charge a sorting fee, but this year they’ve waived it because of COVID,” Upton said.

So there will be a contactless bottle drive and tree chipping for the D.W. Poppy dry grad 2021 at the school, which is located at 23752 – 52nd Ave., on Sunday, Jan. 3, from 10:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

READ ALSO: There will be fewer tree chipping events in Langley this year, but they will occur

This pandemic year, several of the Langley organizations who usually hold by-donation tree chipping events have cancelled.

Susie Clark of the 1st Willoughby Scout troop said “it’s definitely been a tricky year for us as far as fundraising.”

Clark estimated their annual tree chipping and bottle drive is “probably their biggest fundraiser of the year,” bringing in around $2,000 to $3,000.

“We’re a smaller group, so that is more like $10,000 to a bigger group.”

Clark said the scouts have been able to find other ways of fundraising, like a coffee campaign that delivered the purchased items by courier.

That, combined the savings from moving to virtual meetings that don’t required rented spaces, and the cancellation of camps, has also helped.

“We’re doing okay,” Clark said.

“Fingers crossed.”

READ ALSO: VIDEO: A blitz of tree-chipping by Langley residents

First Walnut Grove Scout troop will be able to take trees as usual at Walnut Grove Secondary School this year, said scout leader Brent Japp.

“Fortunately, we have a long drive-way,” Japp said, which makes keeping a safe distance a fairly straightforward process.

They are planning to have three “stations” at the school.

One or two people will begin by taking contact info from arrivals, after which vehicles can proceed to the second station to drop off their trees.

“We generally asking people to stay in their cars,” Japp explained.

And the third station will be where people can leave cash donations.

Japp said they will be limiting the volunteers to parents of scouts and older scoots.

“Were going to keep it to five or six people.”

They will be out on Saturday, Jan. 2 from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. and back a week later on Saturday, Jan. 9 from 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Walnut Grove Secondary School at 8919 Walnut Grove Dr.

Chipping is by donation.

Tree pickup service is also available to Walnut Grove Residents for a minimum donation of $10 per tree by contacting or phoning 604-720-4805 to schedule a pickup.

Remember to remove all decorations, tinsel, and flocking.

A Canadian Cancer Society Christmas tree chipping is set for Willowbrook mall parking lot at 19705 Fraser Hwy on Saturday, Jan. 2 and Sunday, Jan. 3 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

It’s by donation. COVID Protocols will be in place.

And, Langley-based “Chipping away at a cure” which raises funds for cancer research will again be taking orders for tree pickups online

Pickup dates are Friday, Jan. 8th, and Sat., January 9.

“As a family, we rent a large moving van and drive it around the community picking up trees from residences of people who have requested a tree pick up,” the website states.

“This is a hassle free, contactless pick up service perfect for those who have mobility issues, those that lack a large vehicle to transport their tree to a tree chipping site, or those that really dislike vacuuming pine needles from their car or truck.”

All donations are made online via the fundraising page on BC Cancer Foundation’s site and 100 per cent goes directly to the foundation. There is no minimum donation required.

On Saturday, Jan. 9, the Langley Senior Resources Society at 20605 51B Avenue will be chipping trees from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Meals to go will also be available for purchase.

It is sponsored by Royal Wood Tree Care, a Delta-based arborist tree service company.

Municipal greenwaste is another option.

Both the City and Township will pick up trees with curbside pickup, and the trees will be composted.

Christmas trees should be cut into sections no longer than three feet, bundled, and set out next to the greenwaste container on regular collection day. Remove all decorations, tinsel, and flocking.

People can also take their trees to the Township transfer station. A minimum $10 tipping fee applies.

Most tree-chipping fundraisers take place around the first two weekends of January.

If your group has confirmed dates for a tree chipping event and would like to be listed , please email us.

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Dan Ferguson

About the Author: Dan Ferguson

Best recognized for my resemblance to St. Nick, I’m the guy you’ll often see out at community events and happenings around town.
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