BETHEL — Art students at Bethel School are busy putting the finishing touches on 24 ornaments that will adorn a North Carolina Christmas tree displayed outside of the White House in Washington, D.C.

The National Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony is taking place on Dec. 5, and the ornaments will be on display through the entire month of December as part of a special “National Christmas Tree Experience: America Celebrates” display. A total of 56 Christmas trees, each representing a U.S. state or territory, will be on display with the National Christmas Tree.

State Superintendent Mark Johnson selected a school from Watauga County to decorate ornaments because the county is one of the state’s largest producers of Christmas trees, according to Johnson’s office.

“Watauga County is known for its incredible Christmas trees, and Bethel School actually has Christmas trees growing right next to it,” Johnson said in a statement. “We are proud to have it represent North Carolina at this special display in our nation’s capital. The art students and teacher, Lindsey Postlethwait, have worked really hard to create some incredible and beautiful Christmas ornaments.”

Lindsey Postlethwait, an art teacher at Bethel School, said the students were honored to be chosen to represent North Carolina at the tree lighting.

“I am proud of their hard work to create ornaments that reflect a Watauga County Christmas,” Postlethwait said.

Johnson visited the class at Bethel School on Oct. 21 to thank the students and get a special look at the ornaments they were creating. The ornaments will be sent to the National Park Service next week, according to Johnson’s office. They will then be on display on the Ellipse in President’s Park in Washington, D.C.

“I am impressed with the great designs these students have come up with,” Johnson said in a statement. “These ornaments will represent North Carolina well, and I am so proud of the work they have done.”

Bethel School and the class will be recognized for their participation and contribution to the American Celebrates Display, according to Johnson’s office. The name of the school and class will be displayed next to the tree itself as well as on the National Christmas Tree website and in the National Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony program.

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