Today marks the date of the National Christmas Tree Lighting ceremony in Washington, DC – and we’re looking forward to a stunning unveil complete with sparkling strings of energy-efficient LED lights. Thousands of people will gather at the Ellipse in President’s Park at 4pm EST to watch GE Lighting and the National Park Foundation unveil months of hard work. Although the exact design is being kept under wraps, when the switch is flicked, thousands of GE Color Effects® programmable, color-changing GE LED lights will illuminate the tree’s branches.

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GE has been designing the National Christmas tree for 49 years, but it wasn’t until 2007 that the National Park Foundation began ordering their LED lights to reduce this holiday tradition’s carbon footprint. Since 2009, the lighting ceremonies have been using as much as 80% less energy than previous trees. Perhaps less widely known, each of the 56 states and territories have their own trees too, which are also illuminated with ENERGY STAR® qualified GE StayBright® LED micro lights.

If you can’t make it to D.C., a live stream of the ceremony will be broadcast at Although the lighting ceremony promises to be very “theatrical” this year, there will also be performances from Carson Daly,, Rodney Atkins, Big Time Rush and many others. Let the green holiday magic begin!

+ GE Lighting

+ The National Tree

images courtesy of bigbirdz and afagen from flickr