WASHINGTON (Gray DC) -- Wednesday night, the National Christmas Tree lights up the night sky for the first time this holiday season. Students from across the country are sharing that spotlight.
Hung for all the world to see, more than 1,300 hand-crafted ornaments hang from 56 small trees surrounding the National Christmas tree.
“Students imagined things that were special to their states and created beautiful ornaments,” said Katie Liming, a spokesperson with the National Parks Service, “this is one of my favorite parts of the national Christmas tree lighting.”
In 1923, President Calvin Coolidge ordered the first White House tree to usher in the holidays. Beginning in 1954, came the smaller trees, one for each state, territory, and the nation’s capital.
“It makes it feel like a truly American celebration,” Liming said of the student decorations, “it’s a really fun way to participate in this holiday tradition.”
20,000 visitors are expected to attend Wednesday’s national tree lighting. Thousands more will get an up-close look at the students work over the course of the holiday season.