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Last updated: 11/8/16

75th Annual Boston Common Tree Lighting

Boston's Official Tree Lighting 

Mayor Martin J. Walsh and the Honourable Stephen McNeil, Premier of Nova Scotia, will host Boston’s 75th Annual Official Tree Lighting on Boston Common on Thursday, December 1, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. 

The celebration is presented by the Boston Parks and Recreation Department, title sponsor the Province of Nova Scotia, and presenting sponsor Distrigas/GDF SUEZ with additional support provided by WCVB-TV Channel 5, Magic 106.7 FM, the Boston Herald, and the Boston Globe.

The holiday lights throughout both parks will light up in sequence shortly before 8 p.m. when Mayor Walsh is joined onstage by Premier McNeil, members of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, and Santa Claus.  The show will close with a pyrotechnic display by Atlas Pro. 

The holiday decorations throughout Boston Common and the Public Garden include the City of Boston’s official Christmas tree.  A 47-foot white spruce tree located alongside Hwy 395 in Ainslie Glen, Cape Breton, has been selected to send to Boston this year.  The tree is on highway right-of-way and is therefore owned by the Province of Nova Scotia. This is unusual in that with the exception of 1981 the Christmas trees sent to Boston have been donated by private property owners. The spruce is located near the Waycobah First Nations community nestled along the shores of the world-famous Bras d'Or Lakes so their aboriginal culture will be reflected in this year’s event.

This is the 45th year that Nova Scotia has given a tree to the people of Boston as thanks for relief efforts following the December 6, 1917, explosion of a munitions ship in Halifax Harbor.  Within 24 hours of the disaster a train loaded with supplies and emergency personnel was making its way from Boston to Nova Scotia. 

For more information please call (617) 635-4505, go to, or visit us on Facebook.  For Boston Common parking information go to