christmas

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6sqft gift guide, Features, More Top Stories, Shop

44 perfect gifts for every New Yorker

By Michelle Cohen, Fri, December 3, 2021

As much as we all want the same things sometimes, when it comes to the goodies that peek from stockings and hide in wrapped boxes, it can be a real challenge to find the right match. New Yorkers are finicky, have it all, and want everything and nothing–all at the same time. Our 2021 gift guide is up to that challenge.

All of these products have been hand-selected by team 6sqft. We may receive a commission for purchases made through these affiliate links. All prices reflect those at the time of publishing.

This way for the 2021 gift guide

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Features, History, holidays, Midtown

The 1931 tree, courtesy of Tishman Speyer

The Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree, considered the “worldwide symbol of Christmas,” will be lit on Wednesday, marking the 89th tree lighting ceremony. After last year’s event was closed to spectators because of the pandemic, the tree lighting will once again welcome the public to kick off the holiday season. Ahead of the event, learn about the history of the iconic spruce, from its start as a modest Depression-era pick-me-up for Rockefeller Center construction workers to World War regulations to its current 900-pound Swarovski star.

More on the history here

Featured Story

Features, holidays, More Top Stories, NYC Guides

The 15 best NYC holiday markets of 2021

By Michelle Cohen, Thu, November 18, 2021

Photo: FAD Holiday Market

Even a pandemic can’t keep a New York City shopper down. The city’s retail landscape may look different now, but that hasn’t dimmed the sparkle of beautiful baubles, clever crafts, and the company of fellow shoppers. While most of the city’s holiday markets went virtual last year, many of our favorites have returned in their fabulous original form. The big Manhattan markets at Union Square, Bryant Park, and Columbus Circle are still impressive, but smaller, more intimate neighborhood gems shine brightly on their own. They’re all great places to find seasonal delights like ice skating, live music, drinks, food, and family fun designed to keep shoppers’ spirits bright.

Find out where the goods are

Featured Story

Events, Features, holidays

The holidays will undoubtedly look a bit different this year, but just like most special moments during the pandemic, there are still ways to celebrate. From drive-through light shows and massive glowing lantern festivals to curling and ice-skating, there are plenty of fun and safe ways to get in the holiday spirit. Ahead, we’ve rounded up nearly 20 of the year’s best events in and around New York City.

All the events here

Featured Story

Features, History, holidays

How NYC brought Christmas tree markets to the U.S.

By Hannah Frishberg, Thu, December 3, 2020

A Christmas tree market in front of the Barclay Street Station circa 1895. Photo via the Library of Congress

The convenience of walking to the corner bodega and haggling for a Christmas tree is something most of us take for granted, but this seasonal industry is one that actually predates Christmas’ 1870 establishment as a national holiday and continues to be a one-of-a-kind business model today. In fact, in 1851, a tree stand set up for $1 at the west side’s Washington Market became the nation’s very first public Christmas tree market, the impetus behind it being a way to save New Yorkers a trip out of town to chop down their own trees. Ahead, find out the full history of this now-national trend and how it’s evolved over the years.

The roots of the Christmas tree industry

City Living, holidays, Manhattan

Photo courtesy of The Salvation Army Greater New York Division

With the need for support services at an all-time high coupled with a lack of foot traffic at retail stores due to the coronavirus pandemic, The Salvation Army has had to think outside the kettle this holiday season. While typically the charity group relies on its bell-ringers stationed outside of stores with red kettles to raise money for those in need, this year the Salvation Army is calling for digital donations. To bring attention to its online fundraising campaign, the group unveiled on Tuesday a giant 32-foot red kettle in Times Square.

Find out more

holidays

Macy’s 2020 holiday windows honor NYC frontline workers

By Devin Gannon, Fri, November 20, 2020

All photos courtesy of Eugene Gologursky/ Getty Images

The first department store in New York City to ever display holiday windows continued its long-standing tradition this week. Macy’s on Thursday unveiled its 2020 holiday windows at its flagship Herald Square store with the theme “Give, Love, Believe.” According to the store, the windows are a tribute to the city’s frontline workers who have worked tirelessly throughout the coronavirus pandemic.

See them here

Featured Story

City Living, Features, holidays

How to say goodbye to your Christmas Tree: NYC’s Mulchfest

By Cait Etherington, Tue, December 24, 2019

Photo: NYC Parks / D. Avila

Not quite sure how to get rid of that Christmas Tree? From December 26 to January 11, NYC will be hosting its annual Mulchfest so that you can recycle your tree at a local park. With 67 total drop-off sites throughout the five boroughs—32 of which are chipping sites—it’s easier than ever to get your tree turned into mulch that will be used to help nourish trees and plants across the city.

How to participate this year

History, holidays

Image of the first Christmas tree in City Hall park in 1913; via Library of Congress

In 1912, the nation’s first public Christmas tree went up in Madison Square Park and sparked a new trend that would soon spread to parks across the city and beyond. The following year, acting Mayor Ardolph Kline initiated a similar tradition when he asked a young boy to help him light a Christmas tree in City Hall Park. By 1934, tree lighting celebrations became a citywide effort, with the Parks Department putting up 14 fifty-foot Norway Spruce trees throughout the city. Mayor Fiorello H. LaGuardia dedicated the trees from City Hall Park and broadcasted the ceremony to sites across the city.

Read more

Featured Story

Features, holidays, NYC Guides

What to do in NYC on Christmas Day

By Rebecca Fishbein, Wed, December 11, 2019

Despite being the City That Never Sleeps, New York does close down a bit on Christmas Day, with all sorts of museums, shops, restaurants, and other businesses giving their staff a break for the holiday. But for those of us who do not celebrate or won’t be spending all of Christmas at home squabbling over politics with family, there’s still plenty to do in town, especially if you get a little creative. Here are seven great options.

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