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Bring the Holiday Spirit to Your Living Room

By The Center Magazine StaffDec 16 2020
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At 900 pounds, the Swarovski Star itself would be unwieldy if you attempted to pick it up curbside or place it atop your own tree—but a much more manageable Daniel Libeskind Eternal Star ornament is the next best thing. Many mask-clad visitors are coming to visit the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree in real-life on the Plaza, but others are postponing the holiday tradition. So while you can’t exactly recreate the experience in your shared walk-up apartment, fans of the Rock Center Christmas citywide and beyond have found clever ways to harness a little bit of that holiday cheer—in living-room scale.

If the holidays don’t feel the same without the Tree, the live tree cam lets you peek in on this year’s 75-foot-tall, 11-ton Norway Spruce, or a framed Gray Malin x Rockefeller Center Tree print hung on your studio walls just might make you forget you’re not actually standing on the Plaza. Or you can take a cue from Instagrammers Jakob or Michael, who both posted their own Rock Center–inspired trees. (Michael even included Rock Center’s unofficial 2020 mascot, Rocky the owl.) Côte À Coast’s Interior Aromatics spray in Wood (an earthy scent including notes of oak moss and cedar wood) can provide that added olfactory element to complete the at-home experience.

Speaking of Rocky, tributes to the tiny owl discovered on this year’s Norway Spruce have popped up on everything from ornaments to the animated book “Rocky Owl's Christmas Story.” At Rock Center’s own Top of the Rock gift shop, sales of the Rockefeller Owl Wood Ornament benefit Ravensbeard Wildlife Center.

Some locals have also helped share the Rock Center Tree experience in a much more literal way. Using the Tree postcards illustrated by artist Oliver Jeffers, locals have posted on Instagram offering to send the holiday snail mail to their followers. Jeffers’ 2020 holiday map is available for download, too—if you fancy a printed collectible for your own space.

Reading is also a way to travel outside the four walls of your house—without actually doing so. For that, teachers are celebrating books centered around the Rock Center Christmas, like The Carpenter’s Gift by David Rubel and illustrated by Jim LaMarche and Red & Lulu by Matt Tavares.

Here at Rock Center itself, retailers also have adapted to a Christmas like no other. Undeterred by all that is 2020, the classic toy store FAO Schwarz is offering a virtual personal shopper. And Del Frisco's Grille is offering a prime rib Christmas dinner to go, as well as a Milk & Cookies package, which includes sugar cookie cocktails and a pound of (edible) cookie dough—for Santa Claus, of course.

And at the risk of being overly earnest, we also have memories. Enjoying throwback pics and recollections of Christmases past may be the closest some of us can get this year. A Rock Center Christmas at home won’t be quite the same as actually being on the Plaza this year, but for some, it’s the best we’ve got.

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