Christmas tree farm provides more than a holiday tradition

By: Maddie Garrett Email
By: Maddie Garrett Email

DENISON, TX - Hay rides, hot cocoa and Christmas trees are what makes the holidays bright. And now all of those things can also make for a unique educational experience at the Elves Christmas Tree Farm in Denison.

In an era of fake Christmas trees, you still can't beat the real thing.

"You know there's a difference from going to the store and picking your tree off an aisle as opposed to going on a hay ride with your family and making it a tradition to come out pick your tree out and have that “Clark Griswold moment” where you find the perfect tree and you see the star above it,” said Marshal Cathey, who owns Elves Christmas Tree Farm with his wife Sharlote.

But the Cathey's Christmas tree farm is also a special place for students like the Autistic Life Skills class from B. McDaniel Middle School in Denison.

"They get to experience a lot of things that other kids take for granted completely,” said their teacher, Kimberly Martin.

The beautiful trees aren't just for decorating; the Catheys also use their farm to teach kids from all across Texoma.

"We try to accommodate whatever groups come out so the life skills they're a special group and they have a lot of fun the tractor rides, seeing the animals and stuff is just real exciting for them,” said Cathey.

The trees aren't the only site to see on a field trip, there's a puppet show, outdoor maze, and always a big hit, farm animals. And Martin thinks that makes for a great learning environment.

"So much more of teaching and learning is more than four walls and a desk,” said Martin.

But Cathey said the biggest hit for the roughly 20 or more schools that visit his farm is the hay ride.

And for Martin and her class, the field trip was more than just a fun day out of the classroom.

"This not only helps them communication wise, but pulls them into our world,” said Martin.

The Catheys plant the trees, trim them and keep them healthy year-round. And after a couple of years they’re ready to be cut down and decorated for the holidays. They also have a pumpkin patch open for the month of October that school children can take similar trips to.

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  • by Anonymous on Dec 9, 2009 at 10:34 AM
    Terri, it is located on 120 between denison and pottsboro. on the south side of 120. and to the rest of you, get a life.
  • by Anonymous on Dec 9, 2009 at 07:34 AM
    Terri, The farm is located just off Hwy 75, according to their website, which also lists the phone number. This info should have been included in the story.
  • by Terri Location: sherman on Dec 9, 2009 at 07:07 AM
    Does anyone know where it is located? Can't seem to locate it on Google
  • by learn your facts Location: here on Dec 8, 2009 at 05:57 PM
    Shouldn't you have capitalized "godly" if you are so christian? Also, Christmas recently has become a more commercialized money-spending holiday, and it was never intended to be about christ in the first place. According to Luke 2:8 the shepherds were out in the fields watching their flocks at night. This is apparently unlikely to take place in the winter and is thought by some to have been late September, which would make the end of December of the previous year as the time of the miracle of the incarnation. The adoption of December 25 has nothing whatsoever to do with the actual date of Jesus' birth. This is not an unusual thing even in modern times as a holiday for the birthday of the Queen Elizabeth II of England is not held on her actual birthday either.
  • by Brenda Location: Pottsboro on Dec 8, 2009 at 02:09 PM
    The Cathey's are a loving,godly family. Their farm is a great family event. Let them be a part of your family's or CHRISTmas tradition!
  • by ticked off Location: here on Dec 8, 2009 at 06:06 AM
    Bah hum bug.
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