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Your guide to the Rockefeller Christmas tree lighting 2017

Get ready to "fa la la, la la."
Rockefeller Christmas tree
The 2016 Rockefeller Christmas tree. Photo: Flickr/Michael Vadon

You might still have a bowl of leftover Halloween candy stashed in a cabinet. You probably don’t have a final guest list for Thanksgiving dinner. But winter is coming, sweet summer children, and with it comes Christmas in the city. Aside from Santa rounding up the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade, the Rockefeller Christmas Tree lighting is New York’s signal that the holidays are here.

When is the official Rockefeller Christmas tree lighting this year?

The 2017 Rockefeller Plaza Christmas tree will be lit up for the season on Nov. 29. The ceremony, slated for that Wednesday from 7-9 p.m., will be broadcast on NBC.

Performers for the 85th Annual Christmas Tree Lighting include Brett Eldredge, Jennifer Nettles, Leslie Odom Jr., Pentatonix, Gwen Stefani and The Tenors. The concert is free and open to the public on a first come, first serve basis.

Visiting hours are every day from 5:30 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. through 9 p.m. on Jan. 7, 2018. The tree is located at 30 Rockefeller Plaza between West 48th and 51st streets and Fifth and Sixth avenues in Manhattan.

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Do I have to wait for the tree lighting to see the Rockefeller Plaza Christmas tree?

Nope! The tree is in the process of getting decked out; the Swarovski crystal star will top the tree on Nov. 16 and scaffolding will be removed on Nov. 22.

The annual trumpeting angels are arriving in the Channel Gardens on Nov. 18.

Where is this year’s Rockefeller Christmas tree from?

This year’s tree hails from State College, Pennsylvania. The 75-foot-tall Norway spruce was cut down on Thursday and arrived in the city on Saturday.

The tree has a diameter of 50 feet, weighs more than 12 tons and is about 80-years-old. Once the crane puts it in its place of honor, the tree will be covered up with scaffolding and dressed in 50,000 multicolored LED lights.

What happens to the Rockefeller Christmas tree after the holiday season?

For the 11th year, the tree will leave its holiday space in Rockefeller Plaza and be donated to Habitat for Humanity, where it is made into lumber for building homes.

 
 
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