The president thanked America's armed forces and first responders on stage as he wished the nation a Merry Christmas.
The beloved tradition of the National Christmas Tree lighting began more than 90 years ago with former President Calvin Coolidge, according to the National Park Service.
WASHINGTON-President Donald Trump helped light the National Christmas Tree on Thursday, taking part in a almost century-old holiday tradition in the nation's capital.
President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump attend the National Christmas Tree lighting ceremony at the Ellipse near the White House in Washington, Thursday, Dec. 5, 2019.
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"So we'll count down to five to that very special number", the president said, as he briefly turned the show over to his wife.
Joining the Trumps for this year's ceremony was host Jessie James Decker, a country singer, Colton Dixon, two youth choruses - the Tucson Arizona Boys Chorus and the West Tennessee Youth Chorus. Last year, another Colorado spruce from Virginia was not lit as a man reportedly tried to climb the tree four days before Christmas and damaged the tree.
The First Lady, dressed in a festive burgundy and cream plaid outfit, turned on the lights as the countdown got to one, and the large tree was illuminated with white bursts of light.
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The Queen has allowed documentary makers to film the Princess Royal, for a special programme which will be broadcast next year. She now serves because the President of the British Olympic Association and a member of the Worldwide Olympic Committee.
The tree is surrounded by 56 smaller trees featuring ornaments from every state and territory and the District of Columbia.
The tree will light up daily at approximately 4:30 p.m. and turn off promptly at 10 pm Sunday-Thursday, and 11 pm on Fridays and Saturdays.
The tree will be illuminated every day from 5:30 p.m. (2230 GMT) to 11:30 p.m. (0430 GMT) through January 7, 2020, except on Christmas day, when the tree's lights will shine for 24 hours.
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