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Sunday’s Pick: Zilker Holiday Tree Lighting

Rachel Corbelli

The Holiday Tree at Zilker Park, an Austin tradition since 1967, is the focal point of the Trail of Lights. At 6 p.m. Sunday, the City of Austin welcomes the holiday season as they host the 48th Annual Zilker Holiday Tree Lighting Ceremony.

The ceremony will feature local entertainment from the Austin Civic Wind Ensemble, the Barton Hills Choir, and other local entertainers. Some Austin favorite food and novelty vendors will also have set-ups at the event.

Standing 155 feet tall and 120 feet wide, the Holiday Tree is lit from the glow of 3,309 bulbs. The double star atop the tree measures 10 feet from point to point. The tree’s distinctive spiral pattern was carefully created by City of Austin electricians.

The first Holiday Tree was lit on December 10, 1967 by Mayor Pro Tem Emma Long. This year, the tree will be lit by Staley Vernon (7) and Alex Kim (10), the winners of a city-wide tree coloring contest.

The tree will be lit until midnight on December 31. The rest of the Trail of Lights officially opens on December 7.  Be aware of road closures and parking restrictions during this time of year.