Brewery builds 27ft Christmas tree out of beer kegs

Genesee Brewing in New York State has built a giant, 27ft Christmas tree which is made out of 520 empty beer kegs and adorned with 20,000 lights, marking the fifth consecutive year that the brewer has constructed its ‘keg tree’.

Image: Kathie Ryan (Facebook)

Every year, Genesee Brewing increases the size of its keg tree, adding more layers and lights to its festive spectacle.

This year, the tree stands at 27ft and consists of 520 beer kegs, up from the 430 used last year. Now with 12 layers, the tree is decorated with 20,000 lights, with the brewery having invited the local community in Rochester to attend the ‘switch-on’ last Friday (7 December).

The organisers estimate that around 6,000 people attended the illumination which marked the end of the Genesee’s year-long 140th anniversary celebrations. The tree features an LED sign with Genesee’s logo as its star and its annual light show is choreographed to classic Christmas songs.

To mark the occasion, the brewery released its annual, limited-edition Keg Tree Ale, which this year took the form of a cinnamon-flavoured version of its popular cream ale, developed by brewmaster Dean Jones.

During the light switch-on, revellers could purchase food from seven food trucks and there were live performances from Trebellius, an a capella band. The brewery also showed off its wooden sled which can seat 12 people.

Janine Schoos, associate brand director for Genesee, commented: “We’ve increased the size of our keg tree this year. We’ve added about two feet to the base, we’ve added over 20,000 lights that are choreographed to even more songs this year.

The tree in 2015. Photo Credit: John Kucko

“The holidays are a great time to connect with family and friends. We want people to put their phones away and experience holiday fun together.

“At Genesee, that means gathering around the Keg Tree, enjoying the lights and music, eating plenty of great food and drinking Keg Tree Ale. It’s fun to gather with our best friends. That’s what the holidays are all about! Disconnect and join us as we kick off the season!”

It takes around a dozen members of staff to build the keg tree each year with the help of a forklift truck.

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