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Lights On Tonight For Capitol Christmas Tree

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The Capitol Christmas Tree arrived via flatbed truck last Monday, prior to the lighting ceremony tonight.
Markette Smith
The Capitol Christmas Tree arrived via flatbed truck last Monday, prior to the lighting ceremony tonight.

Later today, the lights will be lit on the U.S. Capitol Christmas Tree. House Speaker John Boehner will light the tree during a ceremony on the West Front Lawn scheduled to get underway at 5 p.m. this evening. He'll be assisted by Johnny Crawford, a seven year old from Sonora, California whose name was drawn from those submitted by thousands of Californians who made ornaments for the tree.

The White House Christmas tree began twinkling last week, and today the holiday spirit is moving down Pennsylvania Avenue to the Capitol. This year's tree is a 65-foot Sierra white fir from the Stanislaus National Forest in California.

The 118-year-old tree took a 4,500 mile tour across the country on a tractor trailer en route to Washington, arriving via flatbed truck last Monday.

Access to the West Front lawn for the lighting ceremony will be from First Street and Maryland Avenue S.W., and First Street and Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., where guests will proceed through security. It's recommended that attendees arrive via Metro, because parking near the Capitol is restricted.

The Capitol Christmas Tree has been a tradition at the U.S. Capitol since 1964. The tree will be lit from nightfall until 11 p.m. each evening through January 1, 2012.

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