Branson’s holiday celebration will see a new community Christmas tree, named “United We Stand,” that will “unite our community and our country for Christmas” during this time of social distancing, economic struggles and tremendous challenges to the travel and tourism industry.

The new Christmas tree will stand 39 feet tall, the base will say “PEACE HOPE JOY LOVE” in red and white lighted letters to “promote the universal message of the Christmas season”, and the tree will be wrapped in red ribbon garland that will display signatures of both residents and area visitors.

The tree will be complete with a six-foot, three-dimensional, LED starburst tree topper and will be near the Branson Ferris Wheel at 3335 W. 76 Country Boulevard.

“We’re thrilled to host this special new tree for the community,” explains Julie Wilson, Director of Marketing and Sales for The Tracks Family Fun Parks and the Branson Ferris Wheel, in a press release. “Our team is adding their skills, talents and hard work to make this tree a reality. The Wheel will provide a brilliant backdrop for the new tree display and we are excited to welcome every visitor and resident who comes to enjoy its message and its beauty this holiday season.”

According to a press release provided by the Branson Christmas Coalition, at the request of Peter Herschend and the Branson Christmas Coalition, Missouri Governor Mike Parson has contacted every governor in the country to send a non-traditional decor item to put on the new tree that will represent their state in a unique way.

“This tree is a huge, collaborative effort,” explains Ann McDowell, Executive Director of the Branson Christmas Coalition, in the release. “We are receiving great cooperation from Coalition members, vendors, and the Branson/Lakes Area CVB. In the coming weeks we’ll be announcing exactly how area businesses and organizations can be represented on this tree as well. Our plans are to kick off the season with the lighting of the new tree display on Wednesday, November 4.”

According to the release, the new tree “is expected to be a ‘must see’ addition and popular photo opportunity during the Ozark Mountain Christmas season this year.”

“Our Christmas Coalition Board wanted to establish a single, spectacular tree that Branson could share and take pride in this year,” said Peter Herschend, Co-owner of Herschend Family Entertainment and Founder and President of the Branson Christmas Coalition, in the release. “As we discussed possible themes for such a tree, we decided to celebrate our love of this important season, our country and Branson’s ability to bring families and friends closer together, in one amazing display. Our hope is that this tree will attract lots of positive attention and thus promote visitation to our area for the Christmas season as well.”

According to the release, the Branson Christmas Coalition is a nonprofit organization dedicated to growing visitation and enhancing the Ozark Mountain Christmas season in the region. Its volunteer Board of Directors work year-round to engage the community, secure resources and inspire the creativity necessary to make “Branson: America’s Christmas Tree City.”

In 2019, the Coalition helped develop, document and/or promote 56 landmark Christmas trees in the area. Landmark trees are defined as 20 or more feet tall, a display of 10 or more trees in one location, or a tree that is a one-of-a-kind, only-in-Branson type presentation.

According to the release, area research has shown that, for the 2018 and 2019 Christmas seasons, more than 45% of consumers who visited the area in November and December said “America’s Christmas Tree City” was very important in their decision to visit, and 15% of visitors would not have come here without this appeal.

The research also shows that holiday visitation increased by 95,000 (5.5%) from 2018 to 2019 when visits to Branson, in November and December combined, were estimated at 1,824,969. 

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