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5 Dates to Remember for the 2017 National Christmas Tree Lighting

WASHINGTON – As you start making your holiday plans, be sure the 2017 National Christmas Tree Lighting on the Ellipse at President’s Park (White House) is on your radar. Co-presented by the National Park Service and the National Park Foundation, this beloved American tradition is celebrating its 95th year.

Here are the five dates to remember for this year’s tree lighting ceremony:

  • October 12 at 10 a.m. EDT: Free ticket lottery opens
  • October 16 at 10 a.m. EDT: Free ticket lottery closes
  • October 30: lottery winners will be notified
  • November 30: National Christmas Tree Lighting takes place in President’s Park
  • December 4: The National Christmas Tree Lighting airs exclusively on Hallmark Channel

Free tickets for the event are awarded through an online lottery, which opens at 10 a.m. EDT on Friday, October 12 and closes at 10 a.m. EDT on Monday, October 16. To enter the lottery, visit and click the ‘TICKET LOTTERY’ link. Those without computer access may call 877-444-6777 (TDD 877-833-6777) to enter the lottery. Lottery winners will be notified on October 30.

Dating back to President Calvin Coolidge in 1923, the National Christmas Tree Lighting is a great example of the countless ways there are to #FindYourPark/#EncuentraTuParque. As a bonus, here are four additional fun facts about this great holiday tradition:

  • This is the second year that the Hallmark Channel has partnered with the National Park Foundation to exclusively broadcast the ceremony
  • The National Christmas Tree is a living tree that can be found in President’s Park year-round
  • The National Christmas Tree is a Colorado blue spruce from Virginia
  • There will be 56 smaller trees surrounding the National Christmas Tree featuring one-of-a-kind ornaments, representing every U.S. state, territory, and the District of Columbia

Additional information, including talent announcements and coverage logistics for news media will be shared at a later date.

More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America’s 417 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. The National Park Service has cared for the White House and its grounds since 1933. President’s Park, which includes the Ellipse and Lafayette Park, was officially included in the national park system in 1961. Visit us at:, on Facebook:, Twitter:, and YouTube:

Crown Media Family Networks is the umbrella unit subsidiary of Hallmark Cards, Inc., housing cable’s leading family friendly networks, Hallmark Channel and Hallmark Movies & Mysteries, as well as their corresponding digital extensions and Hallmark Channel is also home to annual holiday franchise, Countdown to Christmas, featuring a lineup of 24/7 holiday programming. For more information, please visit; Hallmark Channel on Social Media: Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, Instagram, @hallmarkchannel on Snapchat.

The National Park Foundation is the official charity of America’s national parks and nonprofit partner to the National Park Service. Chartered by Congress in 1967, the National Park Foundation raises private funds to help PROTECT more than 84 million acres of national parks through critical conservation and preservation efforts, CONNECT all Americans with their incomparable natural landscapes, vibrant culture and rich history, and INSPIRE the next generation of park stewards. In 2016, commemorating the National Park Service’s 100th anniversary, the Foundation launched The Centennial Campaign for America’s National Parks, a comprehensive fundraising campaign to strengthen and enhance the future of these national treasures for the next hundred years. Find out more and become a part of the national park community at