In The News

Sunday Sit-down: David R. Morin
Sunday, November 23, 2014

By Samantha Allen TELEGRAM & GAZETTE STAFF
Worcester Telegram & Gazette


 

 

Dave Morin trims a Christmas tree, with his wife Vicki in background.
(T&G STAFF/CHRISTINE PETERSON)

 

 

 

Name: David R. Morin
Age: 73
Owner: Arrowhead Acres
Residence: Uxbridge, farmhouse on the property
Family: Vicki Morin (wife), four children, six grandchildren, one great grandson

 

 

David R. Morin bought his family farm in 1979, but he had to wait more than a decade to sell his first Christmas tree because of how long it takes for them to grow.

For the last 16 years, Mr. Morin's farm, Arrowhead Acres in Uxbridge, has become a family stomping-ground as a seasonal holiday tree spot. Customers comb the fields looking for their favorite tree, then chop it down themselves. Or, if one so chooses, an assistant can help.

Mr. Morin, 73, a Norwood High graduate, holds down the fort with his wife Vicki Morin and her daughter Shawn Lees. The trio now works together to operate year-round as a venue for weddings and other events, as well as a Christmas tree farm. Mr. Morin also works as a charter boat captain in Rhode Island to run his self-owned Burial at Sea Maritime Funeral Service.

The holiday season, which starts for the Morins the day after Thanksgiving, presents a happier and more cheerful time in their line of work. They look forward to watching as hundreds of people explore Arrowhead's 49 acres lined with 1,000 trees in search of the perfect Christmas fixture.

How did your love of trees start?
"I used to plant trees when I was in the Boy Scouts. I bought the farm with a fair amount of land for my daughters' horses. After they went off to college, I decided with all this acreage, planting Christmas trees would be something that would help my retirement income. There are 25,000 trees growing and every year we have 1,000 that are marketable."

How long does it take to grow a Christmas tree?
"They're about two years old when we plant them and it takes another eight to 10 years before it's of marketable size. We plant more every year. We have 2,000 seedlings waiting to be transplanted out into the field come next spring … We started out with 10 different varieties and narrowed it down to two."

What's the least favorite tree variety?
"The Colorado blue spruce, because they're so sharp, they're actually painful to handle. We have the Balsam fir and the Fraser fir now, which are virtually identical (physically)."

What are some care tips you offer to people so they can keep their trees as long as possible?
"Our cut trees can last about five months … People want to know what additives they should put in the tree's water and the answer is, 'Nothing.' A lot of the additives (companies) come up with will actually harm the trees … Try hot water (from the tap) and keep the tree away from heat sources, like radiators. It's also best to choose a room without a fireplace that isn't going all the time. It dries the tree out."

You have more than 500 families visit every season. Do you find people prefer to cut down their own tree?
"The people like the tradition of bringing the kids out and actually cutting the trees and yelling, 'Timber!' as it falls. They make a day of it. They enjoy coming out to the country and roaming around in the tree fields, trying to find the perfect tree."

What do you enjoy the most about the season?
"Burials at sea are very sad times, so we have the extremes, but just seeing the excitement in kids' eyes when they run around the tree fields, trying to decide which tree is best is the most fun … There are little family squabbles over whether they want a fat one or a skinny one."

And that's an important decision to make?
"Even my wife and I disagree on what the shape should look like."

© Copyright 2004-2017 Arrowhead Acres. All rights reserved.
92 Aldrich Street - Route 98 Uxbridge, MA 01569
Phone: (508) 278-5017 Fax: (508) 278-3841 Website:
www.arrowheadacres.com Email: info@arrowheadacres.com

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