Visitors to Tower Grove Park are saddened by the fate of the Keebler Elf tree.

ST. LOUIS — Visitors to Tower Grove Park in south St. Louis like to stop and stare at a catalpa tree just south of the Turkish Pavilion. The unique shape has led to a variety of nicknames, including the Keebler elf tree, the Harry Potter tree, and the Lord of the Rings tree.

“It has so much character,” said Beth Casagrand, Tower Grove Park’s director of community programs. “It’s such a great tree.”

Tower Grove Park officials announced on Tuesday that the famous Catalpa tree will fall.

A social media post from the park showed the decision was not taken lightly. A team of arborists found that the entire tree was infected with rot.

“For the safety of our park guests, it was time to say goodbye,” Casagrand said.

A date for the removal has not yet been set, but farewell events will be held around the tree on June 9th. Storytelling and handicraft time takes place from 9:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m

Artists and anyone wishing to create their own rendering of the tree are invited to attend the “Artist Hours” from 2pm to 4pm. A toast with Schlafly beer is from 4pm to 6pm. Schlafly Beer collaborated with the park in 2020 and released Park Lager. One of the cans shows the tree.

Parkgoers say it’s sad to know the tree will be removed, but the news also sparks some positive memories. Lauren and Zach Kisley took engagement photos in front of the tree.

“We love Tower Grove Park and for some reason we stopped here around this tree,” said Lauren Kisley.

“It will be sad to walk this path every day and not see him, but we have fond memories,” said Zach Kisley.

James Agnew stopped in front of the tree on Tuesday to snap some photos with his phone.

“It’s just kind of sad that it’s going to be gone,” Agnew said. “I wanted to come and take some pictures of it.”

Park visitor Lindsey Nobolt said, “I feel like everyone who walks through this park has a connection to this tree.”

The park plans to work with local artisans “to create art and other pieces to honor the memory of this tree.”

Park officials all who have fond memories of the tree to share these reflections on the park’s social media pages below.

https://fox2now.com/news/missouri/tower-grove-park-visitors-sad-over-fate-of-keebler-elf-tree/ Visitors to Tower Grove Park are saddened by the fate of the Keebler Elf tree.

Nate Jones

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