Rockefeller Center Christmas tree lighting: What to know

The 27-foot-tall Rockefeller Center tree will be lit on Nov. 29 with help from Pentatonix, Gwen Stefani, Brett Eldridge and others. / Getty Images / Theo Wargo

The Rockefeller Center Christmas tree – the biggest beacon of the holiday season – is set to sparkle at the end of November with more than 50,000 multicolored, LED lights and a Swarovski crystal star.

If you're planning to ring in the festivities, here's some information about this year's tree and what you need to know to see the lighting.

When is the 2017 tree lighting?

advertisement

The lighting will take place on Nov. 29 at 7 p.m. Thousands are expected to gather between West 48th and West 51st streets and Fifth and Sixth avenues to see the lighting.

The lighting will also air on NBC's "Christmas in Rockefeller" special.

Who is performing at the tree lighting?

There will be live performances at the plaza that will also air during NBC's "Christmas in Rockefeller" special. This year's event will include songs from Pentatonix, Gwen Stefani, Brett Eldridge, Jennifer Nettles, Leslie Odom Jr., and The Tenors.

The concert is free, but get there early to ensure a spot.

How long will the tree be on display?

The tree will be on display until 9 p.m. on Jan. 7. It will be lit every day from 5:30 a.m. to 11:30 p.m.

Where is the tree from this year?

This year's tree, a 75-foot-tall Norway spruce that's 80 years old and weighs almost 12 tons, hails from State College, Pennsylvania. 

It was found by Rockefeller Center's head gardener, Erik Pauze, on his trip to see a football game in 2010. Each year, Pauze would visit the tree to see its growth and speak with its owner, Jason Perrin. 

"This is a spectacular tree that I know many people will enjoy this Christmas and holiday season, lit up in Rockefeller Center," Perrin, a school superintendent, said in a statement.

The spruce will arrive at the plaza on Nov. 11, between 8 and 11 a.m. Then, on Nov. 16, the decorating begins: 5 miles of 50,000 lights wrapped around and topped with a 9.5-foot-wide Swarovski star made of 25,000 crystals.

What happens to the tree when it's taken down?

The tree will be turned into lumber and donated to Habitat for Humanity, for the 11th consecutive year.