First lady Melania Trump welcomed a Christmas tree to the White House Monday, honoring an age-old tradition in the nation's capital.
The 5.6-meter (18.5-foot) Fraser fir was delivered Monday to the White House via horse-drawn carriage, kicking off a series of traditional holiday events, many of which will continue this year, despite CDC warnings against public gatherings amid the coronavirus pandemic.
"Each year the arrival of the #WHChristmas tree brings a spirit of holiday warmth & tradition to the @WhiteHouse," Melania Trump wrote on Twitter.
"This year's tree will continue to bring joy to those who will pass through the halls of the White House during this most wonderful time of the year."
Two men wearing face masks delivered the tree, greeted by the maskless first lady, as the brass section of the U.S. Marine Band played carols, including "O Christmas Tree" and "Hark! The Herald Angels Sing." President Donald Trump made a brief appearance outside.
Since 1966, the National Christmas Tree Association in Colorado has hosted an event attended by 100 people witnessing a White House official picking the tree for the Blue Room.
"But ... 2020 is far from a normal year. There was no selection event this year. Instead, the tree was quietly chosen at Dan and Anne Taylor's farm, they are the 2020 NCTA Grand Champion Grower," the association wrote in a press release, referring to a tree farm in West Virginia that has been picked a handful of times in recent years to provide the White House Christmas tree.