By Dave Crawley

OAKLAND (KDKA) — The Carnegie Museum of Art is marking the golden anniversary of a Holiday Tree custom that began in 1961.

In one corner of the Hall of Architecture, men saw branches and trunks and hoist a 20-foot fir into place.

In another, a pair of sisters continue their own tradition. Lowrie Ebbert and Mernie Burger have decorated trees for 40 years, following the lead of their mother, who started the museum tradition 10 years earlier.

They recall that the first few years, featured dozens of smaller trees, with nationality themes. The organizer of this year’s milestone event says there’s a 50th Anniversary theme.

“The theme is so broad, it’s just ‘Solid Gold: Classics that Endured,'” says Barbara Granito. “So maybe you’ll see some that are solid gold and some are classics.”

Making her point are a “King Midas tree,” and another that features the work of legendary Pittsburgh Courier photographer Teenie Harris.

The trees will all be in place and decorated in time for a Preview Party Wednesday, December 7, 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. The public is invited. Tickets are $65.00 and proceeds benefit the Carnegie Museum of Art.

For ticket information, visit the museum’s website.

Admission is free Saturday, December 10 at both the Carnegie Museums of Art and Natural History.

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