Obama lights the national Christmas tree - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Obama lights the national Christmas tree

Posted: Updated:
President Barack Obama and the first family stands, right, after lighting the 2014 National Christmas Tree during the National Christmas Tree lighting ceremony at the Ellipse near the White House in Washington, Thursday, Dec. 4, 2014. (AP Photo) President Barack Obama and the first family stands, right, after lighting the 2014 National Christmas Tree during the National Christmas Tree lighting ceremony at the Ellipse near the White House in Washington, Thursday, Dec. 4, 2014. (AP Photo)

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama kicked off the holiday season in Washington on Thursday with the lighting of the national Christmas tree.

Obama joined hundreds of people for the annual event held just steps from the White House. First lady Michelle Obama, daughters Malia and Sasha, and Mrs. Obama's mother, Marian Robinson, also attended the event on a chilly night in the nation's capital.

Obama said the national tree is a "symbol of hope and holiday spirit." He urged Americans to remember members of the U.S. military serving overseas, as well as their families.

"As we hold our loved ones tight, let's remember the military families whose loved ones are far from home," Obama said. "They are our heroes."

This year's ceremony marks the 92nd annual lighting of the Christmas tree near the White House. The National Park Service says the tradition was started by President Calvin Coolidge in 1923.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Powered by Frankly
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2017 Midwest Television, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices.