The world’s most famous Christmas tree, the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree is placed annually at 30 Rockefeller Center, New York City. For New Yorkers and many people around the country the tree signals the start of the holiday season. This year is the 80th anniversary of the tradition and the chosen tree is a 76ft Norway Spruce, brought in from Connecticut.
Below we’ve collected interesting facts about the famous tree:
1) In 1931 a 20ft balsam fir was placed on the construction site of what would one day be 30 Rockefeller Center. Laborers created decorations of strung cranberries, paper garlands, and tin cans. There was no tree the following year.
2) In 1933, after the completion and opening of 30 Rockefeller Center, the first official tree ceremony was held. This tree was 40ft tall and decorated with 700 lights.
3) Most of the Rockefeller Christmas trees have been Norway Spruces.
4) The tallest tree to adorn the Center was a 100ft Spruce in 1999.
5) All Rockefeller Christmas trees are donated; Rockefeller Center pays for only the cost of getting the tree in, and setting it up. Anyone can submit their tree for consideration by filling out a form on the Rockefeller Center website
6) A Swarovski crystal star has topped the tree since 2007. It weighs 550lbs and is 9.5ft wide.
7) The 2013 tree is decorated with approximately 45,000 LEDs; amounting to over 5 miles of lighting string.
8) It is estimated that between 350,000 and 750,000 people visit the tree daily.
9) When the holiday season ends the Christmas tree is recycled into lumber which is used by Habitat for Humanity, a practice started in 2007.
The tree is currently on display until January 7th, 2014.
Address: from 47th to 51st Sts. between 5th & 6th Avenues http://www.rockefellercenter.com/
Photo credit: Constance Thomas