The ‘perfect tree’ for downtown Dayton arrives at Courthouse Square

Credit: Marshall Gorby

Credit: Marshall Gorby

The days are getting shorter and the air crisper, signaling that it’s time for downtown Dayton to be adorned with the “perfect tree" in preparation for the holiday season.

Donated by a local family from their property, the tree chosen to star as The Dayton Holiday Festival tree arrived at approximately noon Friday, Nov. 6, in Courthouse Square.

The Dayton Holiday Festival committee began its search back in September for the tree that will be the centerpiece of Courthouse Square this holiday season. The selected tree will be decorated with more than 50,000 lights during the holiday season.


These were the guidelines for the perfect tree, according to the Downtown Dayton Partnership:

  • The ideal tree is approximately 45 to 60 feet tall and 25 feet wide.
  • Colorado green spruce or blue spruce trees are preferred, but other types of evergreens will be considered if they are grand and stately.
  • The tree must be located on nominee’s property in the front or side yard with clear access to the tree, free from power lines or transit cables.

The winning tree was selected by a search crew at the end of October. PSC Crane and Rigging transport the tree to Courthouse Square at no expense to the owners. The owners will also be recognized during the official tree lighting.

Tree lighting ceremony

This year’s downtown Dayton holiday kickoff event will be divided into two nights, with a virtual tree lighting the Friday night after Thanksgiving and a drive-thru parade in downtown Dayton that Saturday.

The tradition of gathering a huge crowd of festival-goers downtown for the tree lighting along with a traditional parade will not happen this year as organizers keep in mind the health and safety of the community.

But in its place, the month-long festival will begin with events over two nights starting with a televised, 30-minute broadcast of the Grande Illumination tree lighting ceremony on Friday, Nov. 27, at 7 p.m. on WHIO-TV Channel 7. The Dayton Drive-Thru Children’s Parade in Lights will take place on Saturday, Nov. 28 from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. in downtown Dayton.

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