Dec. 1 - Adorned with 30,000 LED lights and a Swarovski crystal star, the Christmas tree at Rockefeller Center lights up for the 79th time, marking the kickoff of the holiday season in New York City. Elly Park reports.
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With cheers, bells and whistles the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree lit up to ring in the 2011 holiday season. This year's tree is a 75-year-old Norwegian Spruce that stands 74 feet, or 23 meters tall. Thirty-thousand energy efficient LED lights went into its decorations, and the evergreen is topped with a newly enhanced Swarovski crystal star that has adorned the tree since 2004. The ceremony brought out other stars as well, including Canadian singer Michael Buble who performed one of his favorite songs, "I'll Be Home For Christmas." SOUNDBITE: Michael Buble, singer, saying (English) "It was written in a time when it was a pretty heavy time in North America and the world and women didn't know if their husbands and their sons were going to come home. And so there was kind of a deeper meaning and I think I really, I still get that when I hear the song." Also present was singer Carole King with her daughter Louise Goffin. SOUNDBITE: Carole King, singer, saying (English) "We just had a blast." SOUNDBITE: Louise Goffin, singer, saying (English) "It's a once in a lifetime experience to be out here, means a lot to be in New York for Christmas." The night's line-up included performances by Javier Colon and Rapper Cee Lo Green. The Rockefeller Center Christmas tree has been a New York tradition since 1931. And visitors will be able to view this year's tree until January 7, 2012. Elly Park, Reuters, New York.
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