The Downtown Boston Holiday Season is Official With the Boston Common Tree Lighting
The 73rd Annual Official Tree Lighting to Boston Common takes place December 4, from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. The tree on the Common is one of the biggest holiday symbols for downtown Boston, so if you want to start your holiday season with an epic tree lighting, here’s what you need to know.
Boston Common Tree Lighting
This year, continuing the tradition that became annual in 1971, the Province of Nova Scotia has donated a 43-foot tall white spruce tree as a thank-you gesture for emergency relief Boston sent after the explosion of a ship in 1917. Boston was able to get emergency relief aid on the way to Nova Scotia within just 24 hours of the ship’s explosion. This year’s Boston Common tree was donated by John and Ethel Anne MacPherson; two more trees were also donated to Rosie’s Place and the Pine Street Inn by the province.
Before the tree lighting, there will be a free figure skating ice show on Frog Pond beginning at 5:00 p.m. Theater on Ice teams, national figure skating champions, and international figure skating champions will be performing for the public. Since Frog Pond is small, it’s advisable to get there early if you plan to see the show.
Event entertainment will include performances by singer Brittany Butler of The Voice, the Holy Tabernacle Church Christmas Cantata Choir and The Stanfields (a Nova Scotia band) as well as performances by the New England Patriots Cheerleaders, members of the cast of Motown: The Musical, and the Floorlords dance troupe. Comedian Jimmy Tingle will also perform. There will be complimentary refreshments on hand, provided by event sponsors including Dunkin’ Donuts, DAVIDs TEA, and Polar Beverages.
During the tree lighting ceremony, Mayor Walsh, Nova Scotia Premier Stephen McNeil, Royal Canadian Mounted Police officers, and Santa Claus will be on hand to kick off the celebration. Trees across the Common, including the holiday tree, will be lit up in sequence just before 8:00 p.m. The ceremony will conclude with a fireworks display by MagicFire.
If You Go
This event takes place in the Boston Common, just beside the Red/Green Line Park Street MBTA station. If you decide to go, plan to dress warmly since you will be outside during the entire event and get there early to secure a good vantage point. Plan to warm up after the event by going for dinner or drinks in downtown Boston. There are many options for both near the Common.
The Boston Common tree lighting will also be televised beginning at 7:00 p.m. on Channel 5. If you decide you’d rather stay in where it’s warm and cozy and watch the live broadcast, that’s a viable option too.
The tree will be on display for the duration of the holiday season, so you can always stop off and see the lights at any point you need a little twinkle in your day. This is the perfect all-ages event for families, busy professionals who work downtown, and Boston area students who want to celebrate the holidays.