Iceland's Last "Oslo Tree" Badly Damaged By Storm - The Reykjavik Grapevine

Iceland’s Last “Oslo Tree” Badly Damaged By Storm

Published December 9, 2015

Photos by
Art Bicnick

Last Monday’s storm so badly damaged the Austurvöllur Christmas tree that it is officially out of service.

RÚV reports that the last victim of last Monday’s windstorm is the Christmas tree that is traditionally erected at Austurvöllur, in front of parliament. Although Rescue Squad workers took the tree down to try and save it from the storm, the damage was done despite their best efforts.

As such, Reykjavík mayor Dagur B. Eggertsson announced that a new tree will be sought in Heiðmörk, one of Iceland’s wooded areas.

As reported, this was to be the last Christmas tree brought expressly from Norway for this purpose, with subsequent trees to come from Heiðmörk. In fact, last year’s Oslo tree was also torn down by high winds.

Lighting a Christmas tree from Oslo at Austurvöllur has been an Icelandic tradition since 1951. That tradition now draws to a close, in distinctly Icelandic fashion.

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