Big John’s marks 72 seasons of selling Christmas trees in Buckhead

The Big John's Christmas Trees lot at 1874 Peachtree Road. Credit: Rob Knight

‘Tis the 72nd season for Big John’s Christmas Trees, this year operating a Buckhead lot not far from where the business began in 1949.

The Big John’s Christmas Trees tent at 1874 Peachtree Road. Credit: Rob Knight

“Big John” Livaditis ran a restaurant called Zesto back in those days on Peachtree Road near what is now Amtrak’s Peachtree Station. An off-season offer to host Christmas tree sales in the parking lot turned into a family business that is still going strong three generations later, with multiple lots operating from mid-November to mid-December around the north metro area.

Tree inside Big John’s tent. Credit: Rob Knight

Besides trees of various species and sizes, the lots also sell wreaths, garlands, lights and other decorations and accessories.

Trees of various sizes were still available at Big John’s this week. Credit: Rob Knight

In recent years, the mother lot in Buckhead operated on Piedmont Road near Lindbergh Center. But this year it moved to 1874 Peachtree in the parking lot of the former Ted’s Montana Grill and Uncle Julio’s restaurants. The property is owned by the Shepherd Center rehabilitation hospital, which has long-term plans to build a residential tower there.

The sales booth at Big John’s. Credit: Rob Knight

With Christmas 10 days away, some Big John’s lots have already closed, while the others will shut down this week. The Buckhead lot is open through Dec. 18. Others still open for part of this week include sites at Ansley Mall and in Brookhaven, Dunwoody and Vinings.

Big John’s includes a seating area with a fire pit and a photo stand-in for aspiring lumberjacks. Credit: Rob Knight

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