Harrisburg, PA – The state Capitol Rotunda is Harrisburg is decorated with a giant Christmas tree, adorned with more than 1,600 handmade ornaments that were made by pennsylvanian kids and senior citizens!
Governor Tom Wolf, First Lady Frances Wolf and Lt. Gov. John Fetterman and his family joined hundreds of people in the state Capitol Rotunda to celebrate the holidays with the 2019 Capitol Tree Lighting Ceremony.
“The Capitol Christmas tree stands as a symbol of hope and the holiday spirit and will be enjoyed by thousands of visitors for weeks to come,” said Governor Wolf. “This is a wonderful time of year to come together with family and friends to celebrate the season. Let us reflect on our blessings and everything the holidays have to offer.”
The tree is an 18-foot Douglas fir from Crystal Spring Tree Farm in Lehighton, Carbon County. It is decorated with more than 900 LED lights and more than 1,600 handmade ornaments donated by students and seniors throughout the commonwealth coordinated by Pre-K for PA and the Department of Aging.
The governor was joined by Department of General Services Secretary Curt Topper and Bishop Audrey Scanlan of the Central Pennsylvania Episcopal Diocese. The Bishop McDevitt Chorale performed several Christmas carols and Santa Claus made an appearance. Dozens of preschool children from Crispus Attucks Early Learning Center and the Bank Street Center of Capital Area Head Start and Keystone Human Services joined in the holiday celebration.
“Early childhood education helps Pennsylvania parents maximize the impact of the first five years of life when 90 percent of a child’s brain development occurs,” said Jen DeBell, acting Executive Director, Pennsylvania Association for the Education of Young Children. “While access to pre-k has increased dramatically under the leadership of Governor Tom Wolf, tens of thousands of young children still do not have access to these high-quality early learning opportunities. Our holiday wish remains that even more children gain access in the coming years.”
In addition to the Rotunda Tree, there is a 20-foot Douglas fir on the Capitol steps and a 15-foot Douglas fir in Soldiers’ Grove.
The Rotunda tree will be lit daily from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m., while the Capitol steps and Soldiers’ Grove trees will be lit daily from 5:00 p.m. to midnight. All trees will be lit daily through the week of January 6, 2020.