The holiday season does not officially begin in Washington until the National Christmas Tree is lit at President’s Park. But this year, the iconic event, which is presented by the National Park Service and the National Park Foundation, has landed a performance from a band as nearly quintessential as the ceremony itself: Crosby, Stills & Nash.
The classic folk-rock trio are joining an eclectic lineup of musicians representing a wide swath of genres: There will be rock (Fall Out Boy), funk (Trombone Shorty), country (Kelsea Ballerini), pop (Tori Kelly), soul (Andra Day), and instrumental (Joyous String Quartet). Aloe Blacc, a Grammy nominated artist who you know, if nothing else, from his vocals on Avicii’s viral track “Wake Me Up,” will also play.
Although the tree lighting ceremony is 93 years old, it has made an effort to get with the times. In 2008, the tree switched to LED lights, making it 50 percent more energy efficient than the year before. This year, the National Park Service introduced the environmental education movement #FindYourPark. The National Park Foundation hopes that this year’s ceremony will “inspire people from all backgrounds to connect with, celebrate and support America’s national parks.”
The National Tree Lighting Ceremony will begin at 4:30 pm on December 3, and will air on PBS stations throughout December.