A highlight of every holiday season is the lighting of the Christmas tree in the Embassy of Canada’s Rotunda of the Provinces & Territories. As you may expect, due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic we won’t be hosting an in-person tree lighting event, instead inviting Canadians and friends of Canada to watch the lighting of our spectacular tree virtually from their homes.
Please mark your calendars for 6:30PM ET on Wednesday, December 2nd, 2020 to join us for the live virtual tree lighting on Facebook Live, when Ambassador Hillman and special guests will brighten up our courtyard with Canadian holiday cheer.
The Embassy of Canada’s Christmas Tree
The impressive Christmas trees, wreaths and garlands decorating the Embassy and official residence have been generously donated by the Christmas Tree Council of Nova Scotia (CTCNS) and the Delong Family Farm in New Germany, NS. This annual tradition, which has continued for over 25 years, allows us to infuse our corner of Pennsylvania Avenue with a little home-grown holiday spirit.
Follow the journey of the trees and greenery as they depart from the Annapolis Valley and arrive at the Embassy the day after U.S. Thanksgiving. Stay tuned to Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook (links) as we will chronicle their journey from Nova Scotia to Washington along with other exciting content in the build-up to our live virtual event on December 2nd.
The Christmas Tree Council of Nova Scotia (CTCNS)
The CTCNS oversees the province’s natural Christmas tree industry and represents three regionally based Christmas tree grower associations in Nova Scotia: The Lunenburg County Christmas Tree Producers’ Association (LCCTPA) serving the South Shore of Nova Scotia, The Cobequid Christmas Tree Producers’ Association (CCTPA) serving central Nova Scotia and The Northeastern Christmas Tree Association (NECTA) serving Northeastern Nova Scotia.
The Council belongs to the Canadian Christmas Tree Growers Association, the National Christmas Tree Association (of the United States) and maintains close ties with our neighbouring provincial and state Christmas tree organization.
Each year, approximately 1200 Nova Scotian family farms grow and harvest around 1 million balsam fir Christmas trees on 39,000 acres of land. Nova Scotia sells more trees than it has residents.
Nova Scotia Balsam Firs are shipped across Canada and to the United States, Mexico, the Caribbean, South America and even Japan. Their trees are celebrated and in demand due to the unique and trusted fragrance – a scent that is for many the very “aroma of Christmas.”
Nova Scotia Christmas tree cultivation is possibly one of the best examples of sustainable development in the world. Tree lots go as far back as the 1950’s, and are still producing beautiful trees. Soils are enriched with companion plants while Balsam Fir Christmas tree lots provide food, shelter and homes for wildlife such as deer and birds.
The City of Boston’s Christmas Tree
In Boston, the official holiday season kicks off with the Boston Common Tree Lighting on December 5, a tree lighting with special meaning for Canadians in New England and across the United States.
In December 1917, two ships – one laden with explosives – collided in Halifax Harbour, causing a huge explosion that devastated Halifax. Approximately 2000 people were killed and another 9000 were injured. The City of Boston, Massachusetts was one of the first responders to provide aid and medical supplies to Halifax. As a token of gratitude, Halifax gifted a Christmas tree to Boston the next year. Nova Scotia has delivered the official Christmas tree to Boston Common outside the Massachusetts State House annually since 1971, and despite the very different circumstances this year is no different.
The tree in Boston Commons this year, a 45-foot white spruce donated by Heather and Tony Sampson comes all the way from Dundee in Richmond County, NS. The tree lighting ceremony itself reflects the longstanding ties between Boston and Nova Scotia.
On Thursday, December 3rd, 2020 from 6:00PM to 8:00PM, Mayor Martin J. Walsh and The Honourable Karen Casey, Deputy Premier of Nova Scotia, will celebrate the 79th Annual Tree Lighting on Boston Common virtually. For further details, please visit the Province of Nova Scotia’s Tree for Boston webpage or @TreeforBoston on Twitter.