The Tree at Coeur d’Alene Resort, Idaho
Height: 161 feet (and growing)Alas, neither Rockefeller Center nor Washington, D.C. can lay claim to America’s tallest Christmas tree. Rather, a little-known resort in Idaho called Coeur d’Alene has those bragging rights. At a whopping 161 feet, this record-holding grand fir is the tallest living Christmas tree in America. It’s so huge that the star on top is itself 10 feet tall. That’s bigger than the tree most people keep in their living rooms.
The Tree at "Victorian Village" Ferndale, CA
Height: 150 feet
Tree Lighting Ceremony: December 5Year-round, the self-described "Victorian Village" of Ferndale, CA, looks like it was lifted from a Norman Rockwell painting. This hamlet in Humboldt County, near the state's famous Redwoods, is prized by film directors for its well-preserved 19th-century architecture. Every winter since 1934, the fire department has decorated the spruce that grows at the end of Main Street. Can't get there this season? There's always next year. As an historical landmark, the town isn't looking to change its traditions anytime soon.
The Outlets at Anthem, Arizona
Height: 110 feetThat's right—the country's tallest cut Christmas tree isn't found in New York City, D.C., or Chicago. This year, the suburb of Anthem, just north of Phoenix, claims to have the nation's tallest tree. Its 110-foot white fir-imported from California-is decorated with two miles of lights and more than 3,000 ornaments. It took 14 workers to put this massive evergreen in place. Now through Christmas, Santa will greet visitors at his cottage next to the tree.
Courtesy of The Grove
The Americana at Brand & the Grove at Farmers Market, Los Angeles
Height: 100 feet (each)Southern California will never have a white Christmas, but that’s not stopping area residents from showing off some of the country’s tallest trees. Thanks to favorable growing conditions on Mt. Shasta, near the state's border with Oregon, SoCal's shopping centers have ready access to 100-foot white firs that make Rockefeller Center's tree look puny. The finest are the twins on display at the Grove at Farmers Market near West Hollywood and in nearby Glendale. Each is adorned with 10,000 lights and 15,000 decorations.
Mayor’s Christmas Tree at Crown Center Square, Kansas City, MO
Height: 100 feetIn many cities, the town's tallest Christmas tree is bought, decorated, and hosted by a local business—often a shopping mall. In Kansas City, mayor Mark Funkhouser takes pride in being responsible for the tree that bears his office's name. "No other city does it the way we do it," he said after flipping the switch on for 7,200 lights covering the Mayor’s Christmas Tree, a 100-foot Douglas fir. "At moments like that, I feel very proud to be the mayor of Kansas City.”
Courtesy of The Toledo Zoo
Toledo Zoo's Christmas Tree
Height: 85 feetFor 25 years, the Toledo Zoo has hosted the city's biggest holiday party, Lights Before Christmas. Not only is their resident Norway spruce taller than Rockefeller Center's, it's decorated with more lights: some 35,000. To encourage energy conservation, the zoo is using LED lights. They've also rigged two bicycles to the energy grid, allowing visitors to help light the grounds using pedal power. With 120,000 visitors expected, they shouldn't have any problem keeping the lights on.
Faneuil Hall Tree, Boston
Height: 85 feetSince the 1940s, Bostonians have gathered on the Boston Common to watch the mayor flip on the seasonal lights. But the city's tallest tree is actually on display a sleigh’s ride away, in front of Faneuil Hall Marketplace. This year, revelers will be treated to a gigantic 85-foot-tall tree—plus bell-ringers, the Boston Symphony Orchestra, and a cappella choirs. Taken together, Faneuil Hall and the nearby Common will brighten Beantown with more than one million seasonal lights.
Courtesy of Pioneer Courthouse Square
Portland's Christmas Tree at Pioneer Square
Height: 75 feetOregonians found their state's Christmas tree the subject of national headlines when an area teen was arrested for allegedly planning to detonate a car bomb during the popular lighting ceremony. Fortunately, the celebration went off as planned, and their towering 75-foot-tall Douglas fir now shines brightly in Pioneer Square. This year's tree was grown in nearby Gaston, OR, and is the eighth donation from Stimson, a locally owned lumber company.
Rockefeller Center, New York
Height: 74 feetWhen it comes to iconic status, Rockefeller Center’s Christmas tree—usually a Norway spruce—has no rival. (Well, except for the White House’s smaller National Christmas Tree, which has more glitz than girth.) Its size is in full accordance with its fame. Chosen trees must be at least 65 feet tall and 35 feet wide. Though recent years have seen 100-footers, this year’s unofficial national tree is “just” 74 feet tall. Still, it’s one of the country’s most cherished symbols of the season. Gawk in person at the 78th Annual Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony, held a few days after Thanksgiving.
Courtesy of Greater Houston Convention and Visitors Bureau
Houston City Hall Holiday Tree
Height: 70 feetEvery holiday season, Houston unveils the Lone Star State’s tallest Christmas tree in front of City Hall. This year, the Mayor’s Holiday Celebration tree is a 70-foot white fir, sourced from a snowcapped mountainside north of Medford, OR. It’s believed that trees grow better in this particular area due to superior soil quality, better exposure to sunlight, and more moisture. At this year’s celebration, Santa and Mayor Annise Parker will turn on the lights together.