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No Christmas tree for downtown Aberdeen this year

ABERDEEN (AP) — Bah humbug. Downtown Aberdeen will not have a Christmas tree this year.

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There isn't a suitable tree on public property, and finding one on private property might present liability issues, City Forester Aaron Kiesz told the American News. He said the city also does not have the time or manpower to go seeking a tree from private property.

"We're just too small of a crew," he said.

In the spot normally occupied by the tree, officials will decorate a sleigh or a small house with lights, Aberdeen Downtown Association spokeswoman Heidi Appl said. The small shrubs and trees in the courtyard also will be decorated.

About 26,000 people live in the northern South Dakota city. A "Christmas on Main" festival Dec. 6-7 will feature several activities including a lighting ceremony and Christmas carols.