Most of us tend to agree with crooner Andy Williams about “the most wonderful time of the year,” and yet, the holiday season has a habit of sneaking up on us, year after year. Perhaps it’s because December is such a busy month, full of holiday shopping trips, cocktail parties, travel, and visits from loved ones. Amid this whirlwind of activity, the days can come and go in the blink of an eye, barely allowing time for the wonderment and cozy wellbeing many of us once associated with this time of year. Living in the heart of the Boston Seaport apartments for rent at NEMA Boston, there’s one surefire way to get into the holiday spirit: attend the 78th Annual Boston Common Tree Lighting Ceremony, a festive gathering in Boston Common that could melt the heart of Scrooge himself!

It’s no secret that Boston is steeped in history. Each corner, street, and tradition seems to have a story to tell, and the tree lighting ceremony is no different. The Christmas tree in Boston Common doesn’t come from nearby American forests, though there are plenty; it arrives each year as a gift from Nova Scotia. Why? After the Halifax Explosion of 1917, Boston immediately dispatched a train full of emergency supplies and workers to the aid of our northern neighbors. Since then, as a “thank you,” Nova Scotia sends a gargantuan tree to Boston Common. This year, the official Christmas tree of Boston will be a 45-foot-tall white spruce.

Heartwarming history aside, the night is a spectacle of modern holiday merriment, complete with live performances, fireworks, food vendors, hot drinks, and, of course, the Christmas tree lighting. Before festivities get underway, the Skating Club of Boston will perform a free figure skating show on the Boston Common Frog Pond, offering a rare opportunity to see some of the area’s best figure skaters leaping, gliding, and whirling across the ice.

After that, the second phase of magic begins. After a countdown, Mayor Wash will illuminate the massive Christmas tree. In a second, the spruce transforms from an ordinary evergreen to a pyramid of vibrant light in the dark night. As cheers go up from the crowd, fireworks explode in vivid flashes of color, accompanied by holiday music. One by one, many deciduous trees of Boston Common and the Public Garden Bridge light up, creating a wonderland of glowing canopies all around.

The atmosphere is about as festive and merry as it gets. For many, the scene evokes the kind of joy many of us felt as children this time of year, along with the sense that anything is possible. With a steaming cup of cocoa warming your hands, you may just feel like a kid again or—just as festively—you’ll feel like a fortunate adult experiencing one of the many perks of living in Boston’s Seaport. The night is an excellent way to celebrate the beginning of the season with your friends and neighbors, so don’t miss it.