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”Lobster fishermen are known for bragging about who has the fastest boat or the biggest pickup truck.
Now, some of the top lobster-fishing ports in New England are claiming bragging rights about who has the biggest and best Christmas tree created from lobster traps. As the holiday season gets into full swing, a new lobster trap tree in eastern Maine is stirring the pot.
Gloucester, Mass., started the trap-to-tree tradition 12 years ago, and Rockland, Maine, followed five years later. Both are threatening to be upstaged this year by the small lobstering town of Beals, Maine, which is getting into the act with a monster tree that stands 50 feet tall.
Albert Carver, a seafood distributor who helped spearhead Beals' upstart effort, couldn't resist taking a poke at Rockland and Gloucester.
"They're nice beginner trees," Carver said when asked about the trees in Rockland and Gloucester. "I mean, they are a little small."
The groups that put up the trees say they draw attention to the ports' maritime heritage, bring people together and raise money for good causes.
The tree in Beals helps raises money for the Beals-Jonesport Fourth of July festivities and the one in Gloucester benefits a nonprofit devoted to the arts. In Rockland, the tree is major fundraiser for Rockland Maine Street Inc., a nonprofit that oversees the tree and sells $50 raffle tickets for a chance to win 100 traps.”