For Lynn Thornton and her family, cutting down a Christmas tree after Thanksgiving has become a welcome tradition.
Their trip to Cooper’s Tree Farm at 5577 Winder Highway, Braselton, on Saturday introduced new family members to the sometimes difficult, but always fun, venture to find the perfect tree.
“It’s a tradition for our house,” Thornton said as the family trekked through rows of trees varying in species, shape and size.
They returned to Cooper’s Tree Farm because of the quality selection and service.
“Usually Thanksgiving is the only everybody is together,” said Hollis Thornton, Lynn’s husband, as he held the hand saw used to cut the tree after the decision was made.
“This is a discussion,” Hollis said as each tree was picked apart by the group. “It used to be arguments.”
Kathy Cooper, who runs Cooper’s Tree Farm with her husband, John, and family, spent Saturday answering questions, greeting customers and pricing trees.
“Yesterday was tremendous, and today has been busy, too,” Cooper said. “It’s been really good. The weather has been working with us right now; it’s a little bit warm but at least it’s not raining.”
This year, the farm will open 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily until the Coopers run out of trees to sell. With nearly 300 to choose from at any given time, Cooper hopes to be prepared as the Christmas season starts.
Spending their first Christmas in Braselton, Karen Tatro and her family recently moved from St. Louis, and were picking out a live tree for the first time in several years.
“We love it here. Getting a Christmas tree in shorts is a little bit different,” Tatro said. “They smell so good and they’re just pretty, and it’s fun picking them out.”
Starting their holiday tradition after Thanksgiving, she said coming to pick out a tree is fun for the entire family, and she was glad to support a local business where the trees are fresh.
“We’re going to start decorating so we can enjoy it the whole month,” Tatro said.
The Coopers’ farm also features a small petting zoo and fixtures like the giant white reindeer for photo ops, but Christmas trees remain their main focus.
“I know a lot of people will branch out into all this stuff that they do, and we really don’t because I want (our customers) to get a good tree and have good service here. If we had anything else going on, it would be too much. We just concentrate on a good tree,” Cooper said.
After 31 years working at the farm she looks forward to seeing some of the same people year after year. Even if she doesn’t know their names, she recognizes their faces.
“It’s the only thing I know. I don’t know any different,” Cooper said.
Lindsey Knight of Marietta, who brought her 3-month-old daughter along, said cutting down the perfect tree is followed with Christmas carols in the car as the family gets ready for the holiday season.
“We do it every year,” Knight said. “I like that the family gets together to do this because we all spread out and we all live in different places, but we all come back to pick out the Christmas tree for mom.”
For more information about Cooper’s Tree Farm, visit the website.