MILTON — For the next month, a small piece of Milton will hang among the lights and tinsel of a White House Christmas tree.
An ornament designed by Lauren Wilson, a student in the Milton Town School District, was selected to represent Vermont on Pennsylvania Avenue.
In addition, ornaments created by 11 other Milton students adorn the Vermont tree in Washington D.C.’s President’s Park as part of the 2020 National Christmas Tree display.
This fall, students from 56 schools across the country designed unique ornaments for the America Celebrates ornament collection. These ornaments adorn 56 trees, one for each U.S. state and territory, which surround the National Christmas Tree.
In mid-October, the Milton Parent-Teacher Association (PTA) was selected by Sharon Goldblatt, acting president of the Vermont State PTA, to submit designs for an ornament that would capture the essence of Vermont.
Karen Stout, president of the Milton PTA, turned to students in the district for help.
“We emailed our PTA membership and asked them to have their kids, and their kid’s friends and even their neighbor’s kids to take the template and create beautiful ornament designs that show some of the great things about Vermont,” Stout stated in an email to the Independent.
In just over a week, the PTA received many submissions and selected the 12 best to send to the U.S. Department of Education.
These 12 designs were made into ornaments, and now decorate the Vermont tree, located on the Ellipse in President’s Park.
“We were so honored to be selected to participate in this project and we appreciate the quick responses we got from our PTA and Milton community,” Stout stated.
The America Celebrates ornament program is a collaboration of the National Park Service (NPS), the U.S. Department of Education and the National Park Foundation (NPF).
The U.S. Department of Education worked through state art and education offices, which identified elementary, middle and high schools to participate in the America Celebrates program, according to a NPS press release.