History

This annual tradition began in 1942 with a single tree, newly decorated every day for 12 days to represent the countries fighting alongside America during World War II.

The tree was a wartime tribute to the Allies, but it also symbolized hope during the uncertain times. By bringing together so many ethnic holiday customs, the display was a reminder that there is more to join us than divide us. Since its first year, the display has certainly grown but this spirit remains unchanged. It's what makes MSI the perfect place to tour a world of traditions during the holidays.

Christmas Around the World and Holidays of Light is open through January 8, 2017, and is included in Museum Entry. 

See the countries and cultures on display this year

Browse the cultural performance schedule