SAN FRANCISCO - As the sound of a chainsaw made a fresh cut into the trunk of a pine tree, Steve Clancy shared how his grandfather started selling fresh cut Christmas trees almost 75 years ago.
"My father did it. My grandfather did it. My grandfather, Clancy, started this business in 1949 with his wife," he told KTVU.
Clancy’s Christmas Trees takes over the corner lot at Seventh Avenue and Lawton Streets in the Sunset district.
Three generations have run Clancy's Tree Lot
As a third-generation tree farmer, with two kids of his own, Clancy says he recognizes some loyal customers who return every holiday season.
"I especially love it when someone comes and says ‘I used to come as a kid with my parents, now I’m here with my kids,'" Clancy said. "I love that part of the tradition that really means something to us."
Like retail and grocery stores around the country this year, many companies have chosen to give their employees Thanksgiving Day off.
Union Square Christmas tree (Alice Wertz)
Target, Trader Joe’s, Safeway, Macy’s and others closed their doors for the holiday.
With internet shopping and same-day delivery, Black Friday is not as important as it once was.
Post pandemic, many are seeking to make the holidays meaningful beyond gifts, like Brenda Carthegena and her husband Gorgiou, who was holding their 9-month-old son Salvatore.
"We’re out here to see the Christmas trees, getting ready for the holiday spirit, seeing these amazing trees and decorations and snowmen," Brenda Carthegena said.
Brenda Carthegena said this year she’ll be decking out the house, saying.
"We definitely want to feel the spirit and bring the Christmas spirit inside," she said. "Making sure we’re warm and cozy. And getting some traditions started with our little boy."
Ashley and her husband Justin were shopping for a tree with their two small children.
"We’re doing pizza tonight, doing it easy, we got a four-month-old. We’re trying to simplify life right now," Ashley said.
For many, peace of mind is important this year. "Keeping it as stress-free as possible. We didn’t want to travel this year. I’m from Kansas City, my husband is from Colorado. We’re keeping it local and starting our own traditions this year."
Alice Wertz is a freelance reporter at KTVU Fox 2 News. She can be reached at Alice.Wertz@Fox.com