Christmas is going virtual in more ways than one this year!

With the coronavirus still making it difficult for large-scale events to happen, the National Christmas Tree lighting in D.C. has been scheduled to go virtual this year. 

The popular Christmas event was established almost a hundred years ago, during President Coolidge's term in 1923, when a 48-foot Balsam fir first stood on the White House's lawn. Ever since then, the National Christmas Tree lighting has been an exciting ceremony during the Christmas season, with many people in the D.C. area looking forward to seeing it on The Ellipse, the expansive park south of the White House fence. 

This year's tree, a 55-foot-tall Engelmann spruce, is coming from Norwood, Colorado, and will arrive in D.C. in time for a live-streamed lighting ceremony on Thursday, December 3. 

It's not the only holiday festivity going virtual: the ZooLights and D.C.'s downtown holiday market have also changed because of the coronavirus.

This year, the outdoor holiday market will cover two entire blocks downtown, located on F St. NW, and showcase at least 70 vendors, between November 20 and December 23.

The ZooLights will still occur; however, instead, it will be brought to you by a large truck decorated with lights and called the ZooLights Express. It will be visiting D.C.'s eight wards from November through December. You can check out the schedule below:

  • Ward 1: Friday, Nov. 27
  • Ward 2: Saturday, Nov. 28
  • Ward 3: Friday, Dec. 4
  • Ward 4: Saturday, Dec. 5
  • Ward 5: Friday, Dec. 11
  • Ward 6: Saturday, Dec. 12
  • Ward 7: Friday, Dec.18
  • Ward 8: Saturday, Dec.19

Its schedule will run between 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. 

What do you think about the ways events are being modified to keep people safe? Tell us in the comments!