First lady Melania Trump has unveiled the White House’s holiday décor, marking the Trump family’s first Christmas with a “nod to tradition,” officials said.
This year’s theme is “Time-Honored Traditions,” selected by the first lady in regard of 200 years of holiday traditions at the White House, the administration said.
“The president, Barron and I are very excited for our first Christmas in the White House,” Melania Trump said in a statement Monday. “As with many families across the country, holiday traditions are very important to us. I hope when visiting the People’s House this year, visitors will get a sense of being home for the holidays.”
The East Wing has been decorated to honor service members and their families, with the Gold Star Family Tree decorated with gold stars and patriotic ribbons. Visitors are also encouraged to use digital tablets in the room to write a message to their loved ones who are serving.
The China Room pays respect to the holiday traditions of dining and hospitality and is set up for a family Christmas dinner with President Ronald Reagan’s china.
President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s 1866 edition of A Christmas Carol is on display in the library, where the time-honored custom of reading Christmas stories to loved ones is recalled, the administration said.
The Blue Room holds the official White House Christmas Tree, 19-and-a-half-foot Balsam fir tree from Silent Night Evergreens in Endeavor, Wis., that has been decorated with glass ornaments depicting the seal of each state and territory.
A traditional gingerbread house depicting the South façade of the White House and featuring the First Lady’s signature Christmas wreaths is displayed in the State Dining Room, while the Red Room has been decorated with peppermints, candy and cookies.
“On behalf of my husband and Barron, I want to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and joyous holiday season,” Melania Trump said.
More than 150 volunteers from 29 states spent over 1,600 hours helping to transform the White House for the holiday season.
The White House will host more than 100 open houses and many receptions throughout the month of December. More than 25,000 visitors will walk the halls during public tours. Officials said 31,000 cookies have been baked in anticipation of the influx of guests.