If Ronald Payette’s Oak tree isn’t the biggest tree in New Paris, it certainly has to be the most famous tree. Payette, the owner of New Paris’s Neighbors Country Market on County Road 23, just south of New Paris, said the original home was built on his property in 1889. 35-years-ago the family that lived in the home at that time built a tree house in the oak tree for their son.
They built a REALLY sturdy tree house.
During the 2007 tornado that ripped through much of Elkhart County with 90-mile-per-hour winds, Payette said the wind was blowing so hard it was all he could do hold the door to his house shut. However, despite the strength of the 2007 storm, which destroyed barns, homes and businesses in Elkhart County, Payette’s oak tree, and the tree house it holds, suffered no damage what-so-ever.
There is still time to enter your tree in the New Paris Sunnyside Park tree contest. The entry rules are as follows. Find the biggest tree you can find, measure up to 54 inches from the ground level, make a mark, then measure the circumference of the tree at the mark. Take reading in inches and on a sheet of paper, write the species of the tree, location, and the inches of the circumference along with your name and the date of entry. Enclose a check or money order in an envelope for the amount of $10 payable to ‘Sunnyside Park’. Mail or drop off your entry at the New Paris Pro Hardware and submit it to Norma Weaver.
The borders of your search will be confined to the Elkhart River on the North, County Rd. 31 to the East, County Rd. 50 to the South and County Rd. 21 to the West. Contest ends on August 15 at dark. The winner will be announced at Sunnyside Park on August 9′s 2nd Friday Event after Bingo. Park Board Members are not eligible. 100% of the money collected will be given to the Sunnyside Park fund. You need not be present to win. The judge’s decision will be final with reference to any questions that arise.
If you find the biggest tree, you win a $100.
GOOD LUCK TO ALL! HAVE FUN HUNTING FOR YOUR BIGGEST TREE.