Mark your calendars - December 1 is the National Christmas Tree Lighting ceremony!

By: 
Alanna Sobel

Drop everything you're doing and mark your calendars because just this morning we announced with our friends at the National Park Service that the annual National Christmas Tree Lighting ceremony will take place on Thursday, December 1, 2011, at 5 p.m. EST in President's Park in Washington, D.C.!

Now how does one go about getting tickets to this must-see holiday event, you might ask.

Starting at 10 a.m. EST/ 7 a.m. PST on Thursday, November 3, you can enter the online lottery system by visiting www.thenationaltree.org. Be sure you enter before 9:59 a.m. EST/6:59 a.m. PST on Monday, November 7 or else you'll miss out! In fact, I suggest going ahead and bookmarking www.thenationaltree.org and honestly, if I were you, I'd set a calendar reminder.

If you won't have access to a computer, but will have access to a phone, make sure to save the number 877-444-6777 to place your name into the lottery. The same dates and times apply.

We'll be announcing the talent line-up next month – so be sure to check back! And not to worry if you can't make it out to D.C. this year, you can always watch the live webstream of the ceremony online at www.thenationaltree.org or on your local PBS station. Be sure to check your local listings for broadcast times.

And in case you missed last year's ceremony – watch this video!