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DILLON — If your Christmas spirit gets a boost from going to the woods to cut your own Christmas tree, then the Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management can help out.

With a permit, you can cut a Christmas tree in all the national forests in Montana and on public lands served by BLM's Missoula, Dillon and Butte field offices.

Forest Service offices selling permits in southwest Montana are located in Philipsburg, Butte, Dillon, Wisdom, Sheridan and Ennis.

Christmas tree-cutting permits are $5, and each family may purchase up to three permits. Cutting trees without a permit is subject to a citation and fine.

As part of the “Every Kid in a Park” national initiative which strives to connect youth with nature, the Beaverhead-Deerlodge National Forest and the BLM are offering one free Christmas tree permit to every fourth-grader. To participate in the free holiday tree program visit www.everykidinapark.gov. Fourth- graders must present a valid EKIP pass or paper voucher at their local Forest Service or BLM office to receive their free permit.

When you purchase a permit, you will also receive an information sheet that gives advice on how to best cut and care for your Christmas tree.

Forest Service and BLM offices are open weekdays, from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

The following locations also sell permits: Anaconda: Hardware Hank; Boulder: Hardware Hank; Butte: Bob Ward and Sons Sporting Goods and Butte Ace Hardware; Deer Lodge: I-90 Truck Plaza; Drummond: Fic’s Conoco; Ennis: True Value Hardware; and Harrison: Wheat and Thistle.

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