LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) — For nearly six decades, a Lafayette tree lot has been making spirits bright while benefiting those in need. On Saturday, the man behind the evergreen idea was honored for his service to the community.
The Lafayette Noon Optimists Club recognized its longest-serving member, Ralph Green.
The club held a ceremony to present the Lafayette Noon Optimist Christmas Tree Lot with a new name. The lot will now be called the Ralph Green Christmas Tree Lot.
It’s located in the Frozen Custard parking lot near Columbian Park.
Each year the Noon Optimists sell more than $7,000 worth of Christmas Trees.
Green was also presented with a Distinguished Citizen Award by Lafayette Mayor Tony Roswarski earlier in the week, but he was also at Saturday’s event.
“[We are here] to say a sincere thank you from the entire Greater Lafayette community for all he’s meant to the community,” Roswarski said. “Through his efforts – from the Noon Optimist and this tree lot – the difference he has made in the lives of lots and lots of people.”
Green said he has enjoyed giving back and especially helping kids.
“I wanted to give back to the community, and this was a great opportunity to do so,” Green said. “It’s been a great honor and I have enjoyed it immensely.”
Green started the tree sales as a fund raising project in 1959, and every year he negotiates the purchases and personally trims and preps each tree for sale.
All of the proceeds from the lot benefit children’s programs throughout the community.