Christmas preps at Opryland begin July heat

Photo: WKRN

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – Ever wonder what the hottest job in Nashville is?

It always comes up in casual conversation when Music City tries to play or work in upper 90-degree temperatures.

One place that always grabs attention is the iconic Opryland Hotel since it must start thinking about Christmas in July.

On its grounds surrounding the hotel, a small group of horticulturists go to work at 6 a.m. to start stringing the millions of lights that must be in place by November for the resort’s popular annual holiday celebrations.

Photo: WKRN
Photo: WKRN

One of the horticulturists even had to be more than 80-feet above the ground at the very top of a cypress tree at high noon.

“We almost always try to work on the shady side of the trees,” explained lead horticulturist Rae Veach. “But we also have to get to the very top at some point.

She said “it’s not so bad” with plenty of breaks and a workday that ends around 2:30 p.m.

The process in the summer heat that gives way to fall temperatures takes several months, hotel officials say.

The reverse process of taking the lights down faces a different kind of weather issue.

It begins in cool January temps, right after the hotel’s holiday celebrations, and usually ends around Easter time.

Click here for information on Opryland’s holiday schedule.

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