6. How the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree is Located

Rockefeller Christmas Tree and ice rink
Setting up before the Tree Lighting Ceremony

Erik Pauze, the Head Gardener at Rockefeller Center, is in charge of scouting potential trees by visiting locations (ranging from nurseries to backyards) throughout the Tri-State area and beyond. David Murbach, the former Manager of the Gardens Division of Rockefeller Center, served in this role previously for 26 years before his death in 2009. But the tree can also be nominated by individuals – you can actually submit a tree for consideration through the Rockefeller Center website. In fact, that’s how the 2015 tree was discovered. (It was submitted by a family from Gardiner, New York, who feared that their oversized tree would fall over onto the house).

What factors are considered when selecting the perfect tree? According to Pauzé and his team, the winner is chosen based on its heartiness and overall “Christmas tree shape,” as well as its ability to carry heavy ornaments. As a thank you, families who donate their trees are also given VIP access to the lighting ceremony.