With over 60 trees decorated with 50,000 lights throughout Boston Common, you are bound to feel the holiday cheer. Featuring live music, dance and pyrotechnic display performances, the Boston Common Tree Lighting Ceremony draws upwards of 20,000 people each year. Past Boston Common Tree Lighting Ceremony performers include Joey McIntyre, Radio City Rockettes, and Brian McKnight. The tree comes from Nova Scotia and is 45+ feet tall.
In December, 1917, in Halifax, Nova Scotia, SS Mont-Blanc, a French cargo ship loaded with wartime munitions, and SS Imo, a Belgian relief ship, accidentally collided in a section of Halifax Harbor aptly named The Narrows. The result was the biggest accidental explosion in world history. Upon hearing of the news, Boston immediately sent a relief train with doctors, nurses, and supplies to aid the devastated city.
In 1919, Halifax sent Boston a Christmas Tree in gratitude for the assistance, and the Nova Scotia Christmas Tree tradition was borne. Each year a tree-lighting ceremony takes place on Boston Common in memory of the tragedy, and in celebration of Christmas and human fraternity.