The Twelve Days of Christmas Christian season, or Twelvetide, celebrates the birth of Jesus Christ.

In most Western church traditions, Christmas Day is considered the first day of Christmas, with the 12 days run between Dec. 25 and Jan. 5.

Fresh-cut Christmas trees can get pretty dry by the end of that time, so out to the curb they go. 

It’s the perfect locale for members of Boy Scout Troop 305 who will gather them up and build wildlife habitat for game and songbirds and small mammals at Bennington Lake.  

The brush piles constructed in wildlife areas on the east side of the lake are very attractive for rabbits and such ground nesting birds as quail and pheasant, said Al Sutlick, the troop’s tree pickup coordinator.  

The annual Christmas tree pickup will be held throughout the Walla Walla and College Place vicinities and outlying neighborhoods on Saturday and Sunday. 

The scouts have provided the service to the Walla Walla area for more than 35 years now.

They will systematically work every street, but due to the large area and the number of trees to be picked up, they cannot accept appointments, Al said.  

Trees should be left near the curb or as close to the front of the property as possible. 

If any trees have not been picked up by 3 p.m. Sunday, email treepickup@troop305.net to ensure a crew can be dispatched to pick them up.  

While the collection is free, donations are gladly accepted and are pooled between all the boys working. Scouts will check with individual households as they pick up trees and will leave a note with an envelope if no one is home. 

Do not attach donations to the trees, which could be overlooked or, unfortunately, stolen, Al said. 

Monetary donations are stipulated solely for summer camp, Scouting equipment and uniforms.

Boys who worked last year paid for about 50 percent of their summer camp fees, Al said.  

The scouts will be in uniform and will only be able to pick up trees on these two days, except for a small cleanup crew that will retrieve those from missed households. 

Etcetera appears in daily and Sunday editions. Annie Charnley Eveland can be reached at annieeveland@wwub.com or afternoons at 526-8313. 

Annie joined the U-B news staff in 1979 and since 1990 has written Etcetera, a daily community column. She was promoted to a copy editing post in 2007. She edits copy, designs and lays out pages, including the weekly arts and entertainment guide Marquee,