SACRAMENTO – Governor Gavin Newsom and First Partner Jennifer Siebel Newsom will host the 89th Annual California State Capitol Virtual Tree Lighting Ceremony.
The celebration, which is an annual tradition dating back to the early 1930’s will be entirely virtual this year. The event will highlight California’s diverse holiday traditions, native heritage and spirit of inclusion.
Performers for this year’s celebrations will include program host, 2020 America’s Got Talent Winner and Stockton spoken word poet, Brandon Leake, Michael Franti, the Wishtoyo Chumash Village from Malibu, San Diego’s Voices of our City Choir, the Chino Hills High School Chamber Singers and Terrance Kelly and the Oakland Interfaith Gospel Choir. The event will also feature holiday traditions from families across California.
“This year, we will commemorate the holidays differently – kicking off the tree lighting virtually together, even though we are physically apart,” said Governor Newsom. “Let us celebrate the resilience of the California spirit and express our gratitude for those who have sacrificed so much throughout the year to keep us safe during these unprecedented times.”
“The holidays are a time for us to come together across all faiths and creeds to celebrate our shared humanity,” said First Partner Siebel Newsom. “No matter which holiday you celebrate, we wish you a holiday season filled with joy, cheer and hope for the new year ahead.”
The Governor and First Partner will light the State Capitol tree virtually with special guest Faith Mendoza. The eight-year-old from Pope Valley was selected by the California Department of Developmental Services and the North Bay Regional Center, and will represent the more than 350,000 Californians who have intellectual and developmental disabilities. Mendoza, a 3rd grader at Pope Valley Elementary School, loves singing, dance parties and going to school, and is excited for her favorite family tradition of staying up until midnight to open presents with her mom, Ruth, and her four siblings Isaac, Sarah, Isabella and David.
This year’s State Capitol tree is a 65’ tall white fir from the LaTour Demonstration State Forest located near Redding in Shasta County, which is managed by CAL FIRE. The tree will be illuminated by approximately 14,000 ultra-low wattage LED lights and is being decorated with more than 300 traditional ornaments and more than 500 hand-crafted ornaments made by children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
What: 89th Annual California State Capitol Virtual Tree Lighting Ceremony
When: Friday, December 11, 2020. Program begins at 5:30 p.m.
Livestream: The event will be livestreamed on the California Governor’s Office YouTube, Twitter and Facebook accounts.
Broadcast: KCRA 3 will also broadcast this year’s event in the Sacramento region and KSBW Action News 8 will broadcast in the Monterey Bay at 7:00 p.m.
**NOTE: TV stations will be able to carry the Governor’s Office livestream.