9:26am

Tue December 18, 2012
Business

Christmas tree stand operator stays with trees 24/7

Leah Anthony of Mooringsport, La., rarely ever leaves her Christmas tree stand in south Shreveport from Thanksgiving Day to Jan. 2.
Credit Kate Archer Kent

The American Christmas Tree Association says sales of both real and artificial trees have been robust this year. The preliminary report reflects Leah Anthony’s sales at her Christmas tree stand in south Shreveport. Anthony has sold 85 trees since she opened on Thanksgiving Day, up a bit from last year. She says she’ll change her stand over to fireworks sales this week. During the past nine years, Anthony worked her way into operating her own stand.

"You have to take care of the property, rent, electricity, and all of the trees," Anthony said, standing under her enormous white tent. "It also means going to the warehouse and getting more trees, and then switching over to fireworks."

The Mooringsport, La., resident spends 42 days living out of a pop-up camper, set up next to her roadside tent. She goes home once a day to shower and give a hug to her 4-year-old son.

"It's actually not that bad. But I'm one of those outdoorsy people anyway, so camping doesn't bother me," Anthony said. "You learn how to protect yourself a little more. Fireworks get stolen. Or, they attempt to get stolen."

Anthony hopes to sell 30,000 fireworks leading up to New Year’s. She said the recent rain could improve her sales this year.

Christmas tree stand piece