President Obama to Light the National Christmas Tree

The National Park Service and the National Park Foundation have announced that President Barack Obama, First Lady Michelle Obama and their family will officially light the National Christmas Tree at the annual holiday tree lighting ceremony on the Ellipse in Presidents Park, on Thursday, Dec. 9. 

The ceremony will be streamed live at starting at 5:00 p.m. ET / 2:00 p.m. PT, and will be broadcast nationwide beginning Dec. 10 on public television stations in partnership with WETA Washington, D.C., a public broadcasting station (check local listings for program time).

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This year’s National Christmas Tree Lighting ceremony, hosted by hip hop artist and actor Common, will feature a lineup of performers including blues legend B.B. King, Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter and pianist Sara Bareilles, Grammy-award winning band Maroon 5, ten year-old “America’s Got Talent” soprano prodigy Jackie Evancho, from rock group My Morning Jacket singer-songwriter Jim James, singer-songwriter Ingrid Michaelson, Miss America Caressa Cameron, and Washington D.C.’s own Duke Ellington School of the Arts choir.

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Originally started by President Calvin Coolidge in 1923, this year’s ceremony marks the 87th anniversary of the National Christmas Tree Lighting. The annual event has become an American holiday tradition. For more information about the 2010 National Christmas Tree Lighting, visit 

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The ceremony is presented by the National Park Service and the National Park Foundation and produced by Alex Coletti Productions.

The National Park Foundation is an official charity of America’s national parks.

Photo courtesy: National Park Foundation

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