Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree Lighting & Other Events
Tree Lighting Celebration
Taking place Wednesday, November 30, 2016
from 7:00 – 9:00 pm
at the Rockfeller Plaza Rink
between West 48th and 51st Streets
and betw. 5th and 6th Avenues
Last year’s Christmas Tree, The 78 foot Spruce came from the home of the Asendorf family in Gardiner, New York. Stay tuned for whatever surprise this year holds for us as to where the 2016 tree will be coming from.
Full details regarding the hosts and celebrity guests scheduled to appear will come soon enough!
43rd Annual Merry Tuba Christmas
FREE TO ALL!!!!
The Rink at Rockefeller Center on
Sunday, December 11, 2016 at 3:30 pm
to play Christmas carols and other crowd favorites. The tubists of all ages will line up under the great Christmas tree and fill the area with the organ-line sound of low brass. Spectators will be encouraged to become an important part of the concert by singing along with the Christmas carols and famous songs.
The following is from last year and beyond.
Recruited from throughout the greater New York City area, the musicians will be conducted by Chris Wilhjelm, conductor of the famous Goldman band. Conceived by tuba virtuoso Harvey Phillips to honor his teacher, the late William J. Bell (Born Christmas Day, 1902), the first Tuba Christmas was presented at Rockefeller Center in 1974, conducted by Paul LaValle, of Band of America fame. This unusual Christmas tradition is firmly established in over 200 cities around the world.
The following is from last year.
THE FOLLOWING IS INFORMATION FROM a previous YEAR (2004) SO’S TO GIVE YOU A BETTER IDEA
AS TO WHAT TO EXPECT THIS YEAR (2009)
About Last Year’s Tree (2012)
It’ll be an 80 ft Norway Spruce and will be coming from Joseph Balku’s home in Morris County, New Jersey. The 10 ton and 50 foot in diameter tree will be hoisted by crane onto a trailer which will transport it to Manhattan.
November 14 Update:
The Tree had arrived at Rockefeller already.
The 2011 Tree
A 75 Foot Tall Spruce from Mifflinville, Pennsylvania is this year’s chosen tree.
It’ll be the first time that a tree had been selected from that state to become the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree.
The 46 foot wide tree had been cut on Wednesday, November 9 and was hoisted by crane onto a 115 foot trailer on which it was driven to NYC for a Friday, November 11 morning arrival.
THE KELLER/CRAWFORD FAMILY, MIFFLINVILLE, PA
Being a military wife, Nancy Keller has lived all over the United States – from Alabama to Alaska – but Mifflinville, Pennsylvania has always been home. It is here, where she grew up, went to high school and met her late husband, Doyle Keller, that she and three more generations of her family have made a home.
Doyle served stateside in the United States Air Force for 20 years. His years in the military brought a number of moves for him, Nancy and their daughter, Debra Keller. In 1969, right before Debra started her junior year of high school, Nancy and Debra returned to Mifflinville and were soon followed by Doyle when he retired in 1970.
Since their return to Mifflinville 42 years ago, the Kellers have added two more generations to the family tree. Debra’s two sons, Billy and Mitch Crawford, 39 and 21 years old respectively, both live within minutes of Mifflinville. Billy and wife Keri Crawford have two daughters, Olivia and Emma, 11 and 8 years old respectively.
When Nancy and Doyle moved onto the property where the tree resides in 1985, Doyle wanted nothing to do with the massive tree situated next to the house and even suggested cutting it down. It took some convincing by the family, but with the help of some trimming, a little love and some very tall ladders Doyle was won over and the tree became a part of the landscape that everyone enjoyed.
“I had poked around the website to see how to nominate our tree but never filled out the application,” said Debra who now lives in the house next door to her mom in Mifflinville. “You can imagine our surprise when we got a knock on the door from Rockefeller Center’s head gardener.”
This year’s Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree arrived at Rockefeller Plaza on November 11, Veteran’s Day, which seems just right to Nancy. “Doyle’s time in the Air Force and his being a veteran was a big part of who he was – who our family is. I know he would have enjoyed all of the enthusiasm around our tree being chosen and would have really enjoyed seeing his grandchildren and great-grandchildren so excited.”
The tree was first spotted by the Rockefeller Center team during a routine drive down I-80. Rockefeller Center’s head gardener saw the tree out of the corner of his eye from the driver’s seat. Even from hundreds of yards away the 74- foot tall Norway Spruce made quite an impression.
As a Christmas present every year Debra takes her granddaughters to New York City. The trip is full of holiday traditions – they go to a show, have lunch at the girls’ favorite restaurants, and shop at their favorite stores. The highlight of the annual vacation is always the visit to the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree, which this year will be their own.
“To be honest it won’t be sad to see the tree go,” Debra said. “We just feel honored that the tree was chosen and will be enjoyed by so many people when it’s sitting in the middle of Rockefeller Center.”
|Christmas Tree Lighting
& Ice Show
Wednesday, November 30, 2011
beginning at 7:00 pm
Don’t forget, if you plan to be there
then show up plenty early since the crowds will be phenomenal.
Hosting will be Al Roker and Savannah Guthrie
Celebrities to be featured this year:
Through Live and taped performances at the star-studded tree lighting celebration:
Tony Bennett, Justin Bieber, Michael Bublé, Cee Lo Green, Faith Hill, Carole King, Katharine McPhee, Javier Colon, Megan Hill & Others.
The tree is to be illuminated from 5:30 am – 11:30 pm daily, all day (24 hours) on Christmas Day and 5:30 am – 9:00 pm on New Year’s Eve. The world’s most famous tree will be on display until early January, 2012. For more information, the public can call 212-632-3975.
As with all other public events in NYC, the crowd forms awfully early, so if you plan to be there then you know what to do since the crowd will of course be huge. The tree will remain lit until early January 8, 2007. Enjoy!
Where else on earth will thousands and thousands gather for the lighting a single tree? NYC’s Rockefeller Center, that’s where! Join in this fantastic event which is televised nationwide and perhaps even across the seas. Entertainment, Singing, and yes, our Mayor too! The tallest tree so far was the 100-foot Norway Spruce from Killingworth, Conn. in 1948. Maybe this year’s will be taller? Over 25,000 lightbulbs are used to light the tree. Amazing huh? They span a distance of over 5 miles.
The event which is televised nationwide and has local Television Stars amongst others. The Mayor himself would often take part in this yearly tradition.
Some Historical Milestones:
- 1931 – Workmen on a muddy construction site put up the first Rockefeller Center Christmas tree. At the time of the Depression, the workmen placed the tree amidst the construction, proud to have the tree on the site of their jobs.
- 1933 – First formal Rockefeller Center Tree Lighting Ceremony. The tree was decked with 700 lights in front of the eight-month-old RCA Building.
- 1936 – Two trees, each 70 feet (21.3 m) tall, were erected. For the first time the Lighting Ceremony included a skating pageant on the newly opened Rockefeller Plaza Outdoor Ice Skating Pond.\
- 1942 – Three trees were placed on Rockefeller Plaza, one decorated in red, one in white and one in blue to show support for our troops serving during World War II.
- 1949 – The tree was painted silver, to look like snow.
- 1951 – The Rockefeller Center Christmas tree was lit for the first time on national television on the Kate Smith Show.
- 1966 – The first tree from outside the United States was erected. It was given by Canada, in honor of the Centennial of its Confederation. This is the farthest distance a tree has traveled to Rockefeller Center.
- 1980 – For the 50th Anniversary of Tree Lighting, a 70 foot-tall (21.3 m) Norway Spruce came from the grounds of the Immaculate Conception Seminary of Mahwah, N.J. Bob Hope participated in the Lighting.
- 1999 – The largest tree in Rockefeller Center history, 100 feet tall (30.5 m), came from Killingworth, Conn.
- 2004 – The Swarovski-designed star became the largest star to ever grace the tree.
- 2007 – For the first time, the tree was lit with 30,000 energy-efficient LEDs. They draw a fraction of the power that had been traditionally required by the tree, reducing energy consumption from 3,510 kwH to 1,297 kwH per day, saving as much energy as a single family would use in a month in a 2,000 square foot (185.8 m²) home. Hundreds of solar panels atop one of the Rockefeller Center buildings help power the new LEDs.