When you're packing your bags for a trip, there's always that moment where you stop and wonder what you're allowed to bring. How many ounces is it again? One airport had a very simple and effective way to remind people what (literally) flies. The Aviation security officers at Vilnius Airport, aka Lithuania's main airport, wanted to spread a message of airport safety and Holiday cheer. So, they made a Christmas tree entirely out of items confiscated from passengers during security screenings.


"Here at Lithuanian Airports, we are certain that you have seen many different Christmas trees - natural, modern, innovative, and simply quirky. We can guarantee - you haven't seen anything like this," wrote Lithuanian Airports in their LinkedIn post. "With knives, scissors, lighters, blades and all other sorts of dangerous goods on it - this Christmas tree has it all."

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The five-foot-tall tree took two weeks to make, but instead of pine needles, it has scissors. And instead of ornaments and ribbons, it has knives, lighters, matches, and bullets. The tree is topped with a star made entirely out of cheese knives. While airport security did confiscate guns (seriously, you shouldn't even need a tree to know you can't travel with them), they opted to hang cardboard cutouts of guns instead of the real deal.

The tree got some attention on Twitter, as did the massive amount of scissors.







Vilnius Airport security confiscated so many scissors that they were able to make an entire tree base out of them. Airport security has a theory as to why they have so many. "We suppose, that there is so many scissors because travelers don't know that it's prohibited to take them on board," Marius Zelenius, Lithuanian Airports' Head of Communication, told Mashable. It all ties into the theme of the tree, which is to educate passengers on what you can't pack in your bags. "So, with this Christmas tree we want to grab the attention and to show what kind of things are prohibited to carry on a plane," Zelenius continued.

"[I]f you don't want your personal, yet prohibited, belongings to land on our next year's Christmas tree - better check out the baggage requirements before you pack for your next flight. Safe travels!" Lithuanian Airports concluded their LinkedIn post.

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It does seem as if people do need to have the helpful reminder. Here in the U.S., 4,239 firearms were confiscated in airports in 2018. That's an average of 81.6 firearms per week, and 11.6 per day. Seriously, how do people not know better?

Lithuanian airport security is different from the TSA in America, however many of the same items are prohibited from traveling in both countries. But in the off chance you do have any questions, you can always consult the Christmas tree.

Photo by CDC on Unsplash

When schools closed early in the spring, the entire country was thrown for a loop. Parents had to figure out what to do with their kids. Teachers had to figure out how to teach students at home. Kids had to figure out how to navigate a totally new routine that was being created and altered in real time.

For many families, it was a big honking mess—one that many really don't want to repeat in the fall.

But at the same time, the U.S. hasn't gotten a handle on the coronavirus pandemic. As states have begun reopening—several of them too early, according to public health officials—COVID-19 cases have risen to the point where we now have more cases per day than we did during the height of the outbreak in the spring. And yet President Trump is making a huge push to get schools to reopen fully in the fall, even threatening to possibly remove funding if they don't.

It's worth pointing out that Denmark and Norway had 10 and 11 new cases yesterday. Sweden and Germany had around 300 each. The U.S. had 55,000. (And no, that's not because we're testing thousands of times more people than those countries are.)

The president of the country's largest teacher's union had something to say about Trump's push to reopen schools. Lily Eskelsen Garcia says that schools do need to reopen, but they need to be able to reopen safely—with measures that will help keep both students and teachers from spreading the virus and making the pandemic worse. (Trump has also criticized the CDCs "very tough & expensive guidelines" for reopening schools.)

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