THE 2018 NATIONAL CHRISTMAS TREE LIGHTING CONTINUES A TRADITION THAT BEGAN IN 1923 AND WILL AIR ON OVATION AND REELZ SUNDAY, DECEMBER 2 AT 10PM ET / 7PM PT

November 30, 2018

Antonio Sabàto Jr. to Host

Albuquerque, NM: REELZ today announced that the 2018 National Christmas Tree Lighting continues a tradition that began in 1923 and this year’s ceremony will air Sunday, December 2 at 10pm ET/ 7pm PT on Ovation and REELZ. Antonio Sabàto Jr. will host the 96th annual National Christmas Tree Lighting with several musical acts performing lovely musical renditions of classic holiday tunes from the 1920s through today. President Donald J. Trump and First Lady Melania Trump accompanied by members of the first family will help celebrate the 2018 holiday season by lighting the tree at the 96th annual National Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony at President’s Park.

“This season is a time to reflect and a time to give our thanks and our blessings,” said Antonio Sabàto Jr., host of the 96th annual National Christmas Tree Lighting. “I’m so grateful for this opportunity to host this incredibly amazing event – an American tradition that I’ve watched for many years. Merry Christmas and happy new year to America and our troops.”

The National Christmas Tree Lighting also includes performances by Abby Anderson, one of CMT’s Next Women of Country for 2018 and a CMT Listen Up Artist; internationally-acclaimed tenor Anthony Kearns, whose career includes work with the double-platinum group, The Irish Tenors, and performances for four U.S. Presidents and for Pope Francis 1; Dominican Sisters of Mary a.k.a. “Caroling Angels”; American Idol finalist Gabby Barrett; John Driskell Hopkins and Joe Gransden; multiple ACM, CMA, and CMT nominees LOCASH; four-time Grammy Award® and Primetime Emmy Award® nominee Matthew West; six-time Billboard No.1 album recording artist Paul Cardall; country music artist and The Voice finalist Spensha Baker; multiple ACM and CMA winners and 2X Grammy nominees Thompson Square; and the United States Army Band “Pershing’s Own.”

Co-presented by the National Park Service and the National Park Foundation, this beloved American tradition features live musical performances and the official lighting of the National Christmas Tree on the Ellipse in President’s Park (White House). The broadcast offers a wonderful opportunity for friends and families across the country to tune in and rejoice in this holiday tradition together.

First celebrated in 1923 by President Calvin Coolidge, the ceremony today inspires visitors and viewers from around the globe to #FindYourPark/#EncuentraTuParque during the holiday season. The National Christmas Tree is a living Colorado blue spruce from Virginia, which can be seen year-round in President’s Park. Thanks to a partnership with the National Park Foundation, GE Lighting is celebrating its 56th year of decorating the National Christmas Tree. Fifty-six smaller trees surrounding the National Christmas Tree will feature one-of-a-kind ornaments, representing every U.S. state, territory and the District of Columbia.
 

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ABOUT REELZ—REAL LIVES. REAL STORIES. REAL CELEBRITIES.®

REELZ is a leading independent cable and satellite general entertainment network that is home to factual entertainment, television events, miniseries, movies and series featuring big stories and big stars. Programming ranges from the critically acclaimed and award-winning miniseries The Kennedys to Autopsy: The Last Hours Of…, Scandal Made Me FamousBehind Closed Doors, Geraldo Rivera’s Murder In The Family and much more that connects directly to the world of entertainment. REELZ also provides specific on-air recommendations for movies viewers can watch at home. REELZ is available in 70 million homes on DIRECTV channel 238, DISH Network channel 299, Verizon FiOS TV channel 692HD, AT&T U-verse channels 799/1799HD and cable systems nationwide. Find REELZ in your area by visiting www.reelz.com.

Members of the press can find host and performer bios and photos at thenationaltree.org. For hi-resolution pictures of the 2018 National Christmas Tree Lighting ceremony please visit the REELZ press site at www.reelz.com/press in the Shows and Specials page.