Wednesday, November 15, 2023

Winners of Zilker Tree Art Contest will Flip the Switch at the 57th Annual Zilker Holiday Tree Lighting Ceremony 11/26/23


City of Austin Parks and Recreation Department, Austin Energy, and the Trail of Lights Foundation present the 57th annual Zilker Holiday Tree Lighting Ceremony on Sunday, November 26 from 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at 2100 Barton Springs Rd. on the south side of the park. This favorite holiday tradition helps kick off Austin’s holiday season and will feature local entertainment, food and live music. 

Young artists from across Austin were asked to submit original drawings of the Zilker Holiday Tree. First place winners in the Junior and Senior divisions will help "Flip the Switch!" and light the Zilker Holiday Tree. Winners in the junior category (5-7 years old) include Claire Bonyun (First), Ambar Benipal (Second) and Nora Alwais, (Third). Winners in the senior category (8-10 years old) include Maya Nolan (First), Emma Zhan (Second), and Neil Bhokare (Third). 

Monitor official social media accounts @AustinCityParks for information in case of inclement weather.

Carpool to the event or take Cap Metro (trip planner). Free parking on site is first-come first-served.

Media Parking  
Media outlets with marked video production equipment vehicles will each be allotted one parking space in the semicircle drive in front of Austin Sunshine Camps on Andrew Zilker Road. Agencies with still photography or additional personal parking needs may park in general public parking areas.

About Zilker Holiday Tree 
2023 marks the 57th year that Austin Energy crews have transformed Zilker Park’s moonlight tower into the Zilker Holiday Tree. The tree stands 155 feet tall and is composed of 39 streamers, each holding 81 multicolored, mostly LED bulbs, totaling 3,309 lights. LED bulbs have drastically increased the energy-efficiency of the tree. At the top of the tree, a double star measures 10 feet from point to point. The double star displays 150 frosted bulbs.

The unique spiral pattern of the lights was created by City of Austin electricians. At its circumference, the tree measures 380 feet. The diameter is 120 feet. The base of the tree is made up of 19 utility poles, each 14 feet tall, arranged in a circle around the Moonlight Tower. On December 10, 1967, the first tree was lit by Mayor Pro Tem Mrs. Emma Long. In subsequent years this honor has been awarded to the young winners of the Zilker Holiday Tree Art Contest.