From a press release:

“The Park At CityCenter, part of CityCenterDC, the 10-acre, landmark, mixed-use development located in the heart of downtown Washington, D.C. will ring in the 2014 holiday season with its first annual holiday tree lighting ceremony, taking place on November 29th.

The free evening event is open to the public and will celebrate the sights and sounds of the holidays. Hosted by Eun Yang of NBC4, the event will also help support the DC Central Kitchen. All attendees are encouraged to bring and donate non-perishable food items to this worthy cause.

The 70-foot American made tree was designed by internationally recognized holiday decoration company Barrango and will be on display until early January. The monumental tree includes a dazzling 6-foot in diameter manzanita starburst topper with 16 arms as well as 4525 ornaments adorned with 30,000 6”x6” hand-crafted silver-leaves. In addition, the 5200 LED lamps on the starburst and 150,800 LED lamps around the tree will help light the night, all managed by 128 lighting controller channels. Two twenty-five foot reindeer, made from 37,000 manzanita twigs, will also be on display in The Plaza at CityCenter for visitors to enjoy.

All event attendees are encouraged to stay for dinner or shop at the many exciting retail and restaurant offerings at CityCenterDC. Other highlights of the evening’s planned festivities include:

• Holiday music performed by the renowned Gay Men’s Chorus of Washington, DC.
• Upscale Thai restaurant Mango Tree by Richard Sandoval, which is expected to open soon at CityCenterDC, will serve their signature hot Thai tea to attendees.
• Celebrated dessert company RareSweets, also part of the lineup of new eateries coming to CityCenterDC, will be on hand with delicious hot cocoa and seasonally inspired cookies. In addition, RareSweets will have gift baskets and other individual gift items on display for holiday ordering.

When/Where: Saturday, November 29, 2014, beginning at 6 pm at The Park at CityCenter, located at the corner of 10th and I Streets, NW in Washington, DC.”

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Thanks to ncjohn for sending from the 1400 block of Swann Street, NW yesterday. We’ve previously checked out some sweet yellow leaves from the gingko but this is totally wild. ncjohn theorizes that “the cold air caused all the leaves to drop off all the ginkgo trees at once.”

And ‏@SharonBYang tweets us the amazing photo (check it out after the jump because it’s huge): (more…)

National Bonsai & Penjing Museum
Photo by PoPville flickr user Andrei Sinioukov

From a press release:

“The centennial of the birth of John Naka, one of the fathers of American bonsai, will be celebrated with a tribute and birthday cake at the National Bonsai & Penjing Museum at the U.S. National Arboretum on Aug. 16, at 2 p.m. Naka (1914-2004) would have turned 100 on this date. The event is free and open to the public.

“American horticulturist, teacher and author John Naka was a bonsai master who made significant contributions to the National Bonsai & Penjing Museum collection and to the art of bonsai,” said Museum curator Jack Sustic. His forest planting, “Goshin,” is one of the most recognizable bonsai in the world; it features 11 juniper trees representing his grandchildren. “The Museum honors Naka every day by displaying a diverse collection of bonsai by North American artists in its John Y. Naka North American Pavilion,” added Sustic.

The event will feature videos and photos of Naka at work, remarks by the Museum’s assistant curator Aarin Packard, a display of Naka’s bonsai from the Museum’s permanent collection, and birthday cake.

During this centennial month of Naka’s birth, the Museum invites visitors to celebrate on social media, using the hashtag “#JohnNaka100” on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to document their visits to the Museum’s John Naka North American Pavilion. A virtual birthday card for Naka is available to subscribers of the Museum’s email newsletters until August 16. Sign up here.

Arboretum is located at 3501 New York Avenue NE”