(NBC) — If the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade is the unofficial sign of the holiday season, the tree lighting at New York City’s Rockefeller Center should probably be considered the official kickoff to December’s festivities.
Viewers of NBC’s “90th Annual Christmas in Rockefeller Center” will be able to watch the tree lighting live with the “TODAY” show’s Savannah Guthrie and Hoda Kotb co-hosting the event.
The 82-foot, 14-ton Norway spruce that arrived at Rockefeller Center weeks ago is ready for its moment.
“The tree lighting just puts, you know just puts a pin on all of it,” said Guthrie. “It’s so beautiful. There’s something about that moment when the tree is lit.”
Similar to last year’s event, more than 50 thousand LED lights on five miles of wire will brighten the tree and a 900-pound Swarovski star will adorn the top.
“This is like the moment that people gather for and they come to see the lights go on, the crowd is festive, they’re singing along,” said Kotb. “So we’re really excited.”
An array of musical stars will provide a yuletide prelude to the grand moment including Andrea Bocelli who will be singing alongside his son Matteo and 10-year-old daughter Virginia.
“I’ve never been at the tree lighting before,” said Virginia. “And especially I’ve never been, you know, singing in front of it that so that’s very important to me. And I’m very excited.”
“I think one time in your life, you’ve got to come to New York for Christmastime, just once, even just once,” said Kotb.
For some “tree travelers,” that opinion is now a fact.
“Being here is awesome,” said Jaden Kirsch, a tourist from New Orleans. “I could not have asked for a better Christmas gift, honestly!”
The Rockefeller Center tree lighting airs Wednesday, Nov. 30 at 8 p.m. on NBC4.