A beloved Christmas tradition is fostered by alumnus
Jonathan Sprouffske '04 and his family
Jonathan Sprouffske '04 loves to people watch, especially
this time of year, when folks come to his family's Christmas
tree farm, Sprouffske Trees, Inc., in Rainier, to pick out a
tree from among the thousands of fragrant Douglas Firs, Grand
Firs and Noble Firs the Sprouffske family carefully nurtures.
"Just seeing people with their own families makes working on
the farm a whole lot of fun. We run into a lot of people who
come here year after year. There are families who started coming
here 30 years ago, when I was just a kid, and now they're
bringing their kids," says Sprouffske, whose grandfather, Fred
Sprouffske, started the farm more than 45 years ago when he
planted the first Douglas Fir seedlings.
Sprouffske works as an attorney for Connolly Tacon & Meserve
in Olympia. But during the Christmas season, he can also be
found at the farm, helping customers choose, cut and bale
"Everybody works the weekends together on the farm," says
Sprouffske, referring to family members that include his wife
Shelley, cousins Kevin '95 and Darren '95, his Uncle Jerry,
current co-owner of the farm, and even Sprouffske's three small
children, who range in age from 1 to 4.
"We can always find jobs for our little kids," Sprouffske
says with a wink. "They restock the candy canes, they help pick up sticks –
they are happy to try to do whatever chore we give them!"