ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – The day after Thanksgiving is one of the busiest for Christmas tree sales. As families look for their holiday tree, they might notice emptier lots due to the Hermits Peak Calf Canyon fire that burned thousands of acres.
“I know they’re having a hard time getting trees because they’re so scarce. The fire took out about four-thousand acres from Mora County and San Miguel County and that’s a big loss for our state,” says Fabby Romero, Mora Christmas Trees owner.
Fabby Romero is one of the people running Mora Christmas trees, located near Osuna and Fourth Street. She’s been in the family business since her father first established it in 1986.
Romero says this year has been harder than ever, after the fires this summer destroyed thousands of acres of trees.
At the start of the season they usually buy about 400 trees, but with fewer trees available, they’re down to about half the normal amount.
They say inflation has also affected the rent prices for the lot and fuel costs for transporting trees. Despite the difficulties, they say they haven’t lost sight of what’s important to them.
“Making people happy, that’s what it means to us. And it makes us happy to see people happy,” says Romero.
Harrison Joe says he’s been a loyal customer for five years and says it’s tradition to get his tree after Thanksgiving.
“It means a lot, it means a lot for my kids and I can’t really describe what it means, it means a lot to me. I just want my kids to be happy and my family to be happy, and have a good Christmas,” says Harrison Joe.
One customer says he used to get a tree with his parents. After his father passed away, he honors the tradition by coming with his mother every year.
“It’s about family, being with family, remembering family that’s not here with us. It’s just family,” says Jack Rogers.
This Monday, the Bureau of Land Management began personal Christmas tree permit sales, which allows people to cut their own trees from public lands.
Permits are available through the BLM office through December 24th and cost five dollars per tree.