The Christmas Tree in Rockefeller Center is the pinnacle of Christmas traditions in New York City. The tree has dazzled tens of thousands of residents and tourists for 80 years, and this year promised to be no exception.
The Norway Spruce tree illuminated December 4 during the 81st anniversary of the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony. Mayor Michael Bloomberg ignited 45,000 LED lights and a Swarovoski crystal star, measuring 9.5 feet in diameter and weighing 550 pounds, during the televised event.
The Today Show anchors hosted this event and spectators were entertained by musicians such as Mary J. Blige, Toni Braxton, Mariah Carey, Kelly Clarkson, Kenny “Babyface” Edmonds, the Goo Goo Dolls, Ariana Grande and Jewel.
Convent of the Sacred Heart senior Sydney DeVoe, who was present at this event, said the excitement was palpable in the moments before the tree was lit up.
“The performances were suberb and got everyone in the crowd into the Christmas spirit,” Sydney said.
The 76-foot tree arrived in New York City from the Vargoshe family farm in Shelton, Connecticut after growing for 75 years. This spruce is the town of Shelton’s second contribution within the past six years.
“It was a thrill and an honor back in 2007, and it’s just as big a thrill for us this time,” Mayor of Shelton, CT Mark Lauretti said to The New York Daily News. “This is like the national Christmas tree, and in many ways we represent small-town America. So this is a big deal for us.”
- Mo Narasimhan, Staff Writer