When it comes to the family Christmas tree is your family Team Real Tree or Team Fake Tree? If you're #TeamRealTree all the way and happen to have a fourth grader, your tree could be free this year!
What's interesting about #TeamRealTree is that it has it's own subdivisions. There are families that will get a real tree but spend time perusing a tree lot to pick the perfect one. The other half of real tree lovers insist on doing it Griswold style by loading up their family in the van and venturing out to cut down their own perfect Christmas tree. The free Christmas tree offer is for those who fall into that second subdivision.
Both the Boise and Payette National Forests participates in "Every Kid Outdoors." This is a program available to fourth-graders across the state of Idaho. Signing up for a pass lets kids and their families experience outdoor adventures through over 2,000 federal lands and water for free. The goal is to help inspire these kids to put down their tablets and video games and become the next generation of outdoor enthusiasts.
One of the perks of being a fourth-graders signed up for the program is a FREE Christmas tree permit to share with your parents. To get their permits, kids can must first sign-up for "Every Kid Outdoors" which they can do with a parent's help HERE. They'll get their pass by completing a short, educational activity.
Once your fourth grader has their pass, they can print the pass and use it to get their free Christmas tree permit. The Payette National Forest office explains that for their permits, parents will need to call a Forest Service office for curbside service because the free permits aren't available through their commercial vendors.
Kids can also use their Every Kid Outdoors pass to get their Christmas Tree permits from either the Boise or Payette National Forests through recreation.gov. To do so, they just have to enter their voucher number at checkout. Getting your permits online does come with a $2.50 reservation fee.
Permits are good for one tree up to measuring up to 12 foot tall and can be used November 20-December 31.