Channel 2 gets an exclusive inside look at Governor’s Mansion decorated for the holidays

ATLANTA — It’s a magical time of year as people start getting into the holiday spirit with bright lights and glitzy decorations. The Georgia Governor’s Mansion is no different.

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If you have driven by you see thousands of lights on the big tree outside, but did you know there are nearly 20 decorated trees inside? They highlight the economic development that has made Georgia the number one state to do business 10 years in a row from Area Development magazine.

Tours of the mansion wrap up this week but Channel 2′s Karyn Greer gives you an exclusive tour from First Lady Marty Kemp of all the holiday glamour.

“People have been donating trees to the mansion for probably 30 years. The funny thing about the tree in the front yard is he came in on a flatbed because he’s 3,536 feet tall and they were unwrapping him, and his limbs kept falling off,” Kemp said.

The Governor’s Mansion has been ornately decorated for the holidays for decades. For more than 30 years people have been donating Christmas trees.


For Georgia’s first family, it has become a tradition they cherish. More than a dozen trees adorn some rooms this year representing countries that do business and create jobs in Georgia.

“France, Japan, Netherlands, Belgium, Canada, Mexico, South Korea, Switzerland,” said Kemp.

And perhaps one of her favorite trees, decorated in blue and white elegance, represents the Netherlands.

“We asked the department of (GDEC) to contact the consulates and they donated the trees to represent their country. We have one tree that’s divided half and half with one country and (they) shared a tree. The rest brought all their own ornaments and I mean, it was so fun to look at how everything went on the trees and how it lit up and just showcase their country,” Kemp explained.

The first lady says you can hear visitors whisper that they didn’t realize so many countries are creating jobs in Georgia.

“(There are) 885 Japanese companies in Georgia with 49,344 jobs in our state. I mean, if you add all that up with all these cut with all these countries, that’s a lot of jobs,” Kemp said.

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Greer also had a chance to visit with Amy Porter Kemp, the youngest daughter, who is majoring in public relations at UGA. Coming home for the holidays is always very special for her and her sisters.

“It’s pretty magical. I will say it’s really fun to watch people come in, especially for the tree lighting like little kids, and listen to people seeing and it’s become like, one of our favorite traditions here,” Amy Porter Kemp said.

Greer couldn’t leave without asking the big question, “Is the White House in view for the Kemp family?”

“I didn’t think we’d be here. I thought I was marrying a construction boy from Athens. I would have never dreamed that he be a state senator....secretary of state...(or) he’d be governor. The Lord has a plan for you, just like he liked human trafficking in my heart, you have to answer his call. So that’s where I’ll leave that.


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