MERRILL - A horse-drawn wagon in Merrill pulled families around as they searched for a tree to fit their holiday needs.
Addyson Podgorski spent a cold Sunday afternoon doing different winter-themed activities at Fritz's Christmas Mountain.
"Unhitched the horses, keep them company and then I helped haul trees out and did some shoveling," said Podgorski.
At Fritz's, customers can pick their own Christmas trees. Then workers cut the tree and get it ready to take home. Podgorski says the best part of spending her day at the Christmas tree farm is the local connections she gets to make.
"Getting to talk to people and what their story is," said Podgorski. "Just enjoying being out in the cold and just kind of talking to people."
Katie Podgorski says plenty of families in North and Central Wisconsin head over to Fritz's to pick out the perfect Christmas tree.
"It's their tradition. They enjoy getting their family together and coming up here. They like the atmosphere," said Podgorski. "Everybody is always happy up here. Just the spirit of Christmas is alive up here."
Podgorski's family has been running this business since the early '90s. She says that it has grown over the years into exactly what her grandfather would have wanted.
"My grandpa Fritz started this business because he loved Christmas," said Podgorski. "His greatest joy was bringing his family together for Christmas. This was his dream."
RHINELANDER - 114 colorful flower baskets will soon flood the streets of downtown Rhinelander.
For eight years the master gardeners at Forth Floral have put their effort into making downtown appealing to visitors.
Every April, petunias--one of the easiest flowers to grow and maintain--are picked out by color and grown in the greenhouse.
After that, each basket is displayed in June and watered every day for the rest of the season.
Forth Floral co-owner Ruth Hempel knows the impact the flowers have on people.
"Oh, people just love the hanging baskets. It's just been a real boost, it's good for our community as well as all the visitors that come to town. It just makes downtown a really beautiful place," she said.
A committee works with downtown to fund a campaign to fund the planting and maintenance of the flowers.
As a result of the coronavirus pandemic, the group is struggling to find people to help nurture the plants.
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