How the Grinch Broke Grass Valley's Heart

Friday, Dec 4, 2009  |  Updated 11:00 AM PDT
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Jim Carrey as the Grinch.

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Grass Valley residents are searching for the Grinch who chopped down a special tree that has been decorated on holidays for a decade.

"It made me cry," said Karin Brown, who owns the tree.

Brown takes the time to dress up the pine for Christmas, New Year's Day, Valentine's Day, St. Patrick's Day, Easter and other holidays. She spruces up the tree, located on the edge of her property along You Bet Road, with a different theme for every month. She's done it about 120 times.

"A lot of work, lot of work," Brown said.

"It was always just a little sparkle of joy," said neighbor Bill Chilcott, who called the act a "malicious act of vandalism."

But just like the residents of Whoville in the Dr. Seuss story, Grass Valley isn't letting a prank get in the way of holiday cheer.

"I've had 10 cars come down here one night to thank me very much and tell me how sad it was for them," Brown said.

Chilcott is offering a $1,000 reward for information.

"My first thought was I would love to have him horse-whipped, and the next thought was, the best thing I can do is put up a good reward -- maybe get him arrested," Chilcott said.

Other people who live nearby are working together to get Brown a new tree.

"Which is really super," Brown added.

"It will be different because the original is gone, but I think the sentiment will be expressed," Chilcott said.

Brown is expecting to get a temporary tree by Monday. The community hopes to give her a new permanent tree by January.

This article originally appeared on

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