WASHINGTON – Students from 58 schools across the nation and abroad have designed one-of-a-kind ornaments for the 2021 National Christmas Tree display on the Ellipse in President’s Park. These unique ornaments will adorn 58 smaller trees surrounding the National Christmas Tree. The trees represent each U.S. state, territory and the District of Columbia as part of the America Celebrates ornament display. Schools managed by the Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Indian Education and the Department of Defense Education Activity will also participate in the display for the first time this year.
The America Celebrates ornament program is an annual collaboration of the National Park Service (NPS), the U.S. Department of Education and the National Park Foundation (NPF). The U.S. Department of Education worked with states and territories to identify elementary, middle and high schools to participate in the America Celebrates program. The project is funded by the NPF.
From state flowers to notable landmarks, students created ornaments that celebrate the places they call home. Check out thenationaltree.org and the President’s Park Facebook page for more photos of ornaments.
The America Celebrates display is one of the highlights of the National Christmas Tree experience. In partnership with NPF, CBS will broadcast the 2021 ceremony on Sunday, Dec. 5 at 8:30-9:30 PM, ET/8-9 PM, PT on the CBS Television Network.
You’re invited to view the National Christmas Tree and the 58 state, district and territory trees and their ornaments up close daily from Dec. 4 through Jan. 1, 2022.
The National Christmas Tree Lighting has strong ties to education. In 1923, a letter arrived at the White House from the District of Columbia Public Schools proposing that a decorated Christmas tree be placed on the South Lawn of the White House. On Christmas Eve that year, President Calvin Coolidge walked from the Oval Office to the Ellipse and pushed a button that lit the first National Christmas Tree. It was a 48-foot balsam fir donated by Middlebury College in Vermont.
Since 1973, the National Christmas Tree has been a living tree which can be viewed year-round in President’s Park – one of America’s 423 national parks! Ahead of the holiday season, the NPS planted a new National Christmas Tree. The new tree is a 27-foot white fir (Abies Concolor) from Middleburg, Pa. The new National Christmas Tree will be lit for the first time on Dec. 2 during the 99th National Christmas Tree Lighting ceremony.
58 schools designed ornaments for the 2021 National Christmas Tree display in President’s Park:
McAdory High School
Ayaprun Elitnaurvik/Chinook Elementary
Manulele Tausala Elementary School
Nogales High School
Thousand Oaks Elementary
Andover Elementary School
Laurel Middle School
District of Columbia
Eastern High School
Osceola High School
North Paulding High School
Academy of Our Lady of Guam
President William McKinley High School
Idaho Arts Charter School
Betty Shabazz International Charter School
Danville North Elementary
Johnston High School
Blue Valley and Most Pure Heart of Mary
Marion County High School
Washington Marion Magnet High School
Bangor High School
Manchester Valley High School
St. John Paul II Catholic Academy
Benton Harbor Area Schools
St. Alphonsus Catholic School
Ida B. Wells Academic & Performing Arts Complex
Owensville High School
Arlee High School
Cody Elementary School
Ferron Elementary School
Rundlett Middle School
Durban Avenue Elementary School
New Mexico School for the Arts
Marlboro High School
Alleghany High School
Sheyenne High School
Northern Mariana Islands
Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands Public School System
Shawnee Local Schools
Glenpool High School
Oregon School for the Deaf
George W. Nebinger School
Escuela Dr. Francisco Hernández y Gaetán
Mary E. Fogarty Elementary
Inman Elementary School
Tri-Valley High School
West Middle School
Caldwell Arts Academy
U.S. Virgin Islands
St. Croix Educational Complex
Utah Schools for the Deaf and Blind
Colchester High School
Binford Middle School
Harmony Elementary School
Robert L. Bland Middle School
Highland Community Schools
Eastside Elementary School
Bureau of Indian Education
Pine Springs Day School (Arizona), Cheyenne-Eagle Butte School (South Dakota), Lac Court Orielles Ojibwe School (Wisconsin)
Department of Defense Education Activity
Vogelweh Elementary School (Kaiserslautern, Germany), Humphreys High School (Camp Humphreys, Republic of Korea), and Ramey Unit School (Aguadilla, Puerto Rico)
ABOUT THE NATIONAL PARK SERVICE
More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America’s 423 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: www.nps.gov, on Facebook: www.facebook.com/nationalparkservice, Twitter: www.twitter.com/natlparkservice, and YouTube: www.youtube.com/nationalparkservice.
ABOUT THE U.S. DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION
The original Department of Education was created in 1867 to collect information on schools and teaching that would help states establish effective school systems. In 1980, Congress established the U.S. Department of Education as a Cabinet-level agency. While the agency’s name and location within the Executive Branch have changed over the past 150 years, this early emphasis on getting information on what works in education to teachers and education policymakers continues to the present day. Today, the Department operates programs that touch on every area and level of education. Its elementary and secondary programs annually serve over 18,000 school districts and more than 55 million students attending nearly 100,000 public schools and approximately 35,000 private schools. Department programs also provide grant, loan, and work-study assistance to about 16 million postsecondary students.
ABOUT THE NATIONAL PARK FOUNDATION
The National Park Foundation works to protect wildlife and park lands, preserve history and culture, educate and engage youth, and connect people everywhere to the wonder of parks. We do it in collaboration with the National Park Service, the park partner community, and with the generous support of donors, without whom our work would not be possible. Learn more at nationalparks.org.