Hayden’s roving Christmas tree tradition revived thanks to 13-year-old
HAYDEN — A Hayden tradition lives on thanks to a local teenager and his imagination.
Dylan Brady, a 13-year-old who attends Hayden Middle School, felt something was missing when the town’s roving Christmas tree tradition disappeared last year.
The Christmas holiday means a lot to Dylan.
“It can be a day where most relate and have a day without bad stuff going on,” he said.
The roving Christmas tree was a one-float parade started by Walt Webber — an annual event that continued for decades, put on by the Webbers and their extended family.
The family moved on, and the tradition ended last year.
Webber’s granddaughter, Cindy Wright, said last year she hoped someone else would keep the tree roving.
“We’re hoping that in one year without it, people will really miss it,” Wright said.
An eighth grader, who grew up with the annual tradition, answered the call.
“I just wanted to get everyone back in the mood of Christmas,” Dylan said.
Dylan put out a call for help on Facebook, and the donations started coming in. Those donations included candy to pass out to kids, a can of gas to run a generator to power the lights, music and an amplifier, as well as a 20-foot trailer.
“I had a lot of donations,” Dylan said.
“Just a big ‘thank you’ to everyone that helped,” said Dylan’s mother, Trish Krieger.
Dylan also had help from his friends, including 13-year-old Kyler Stout.
On Friday and Saturday nights, Dylan and his stepfather Tim Krieger slowly drove the tree through the town’s streets, playing loud Christmas music and passing out bags of candy.
“It was fun to see the reaction from the community,” Trish Krieger said.
Kids and families looked out windows and were surprised to see the roving tree drive by.
“You could see kids grabbing their jackets and putting them on,” Tim Krieger said.
Residents thought the original roving tree had returned, but that was not the case.
“It was just a 13-year-old’s idea to put people in the Christmas spirit,” Tim Krieger said.
The family said they are willing to continue the tradition if no one else steps up.
“I’d like to do it next year,” Dylan said.
Weather forecasters are expecting several inches of snow to blanket the Yampa Valley this weekend as two winter storms move into the area.