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Tallest Christmas tree in nation lights up at Anthem outlet mall

PHOENIX — The tallest fresh-cut Christmas tree in the U.S. was lit Saturday night in Anthem, Arizona, to cap a two-night celebration.

At approximately 7 p.m., Santa Claus along with television anchorman Javier Soto and Phoenix Councilwoman Thelda Williams led a countdown and flipped a switch to light up the massive tree.

The white fir is 112 feet high, 27 feet wide and weighs 12 tons. The tree arrived on Tuesday, Oct. 21, after it made a four-day, 750-mile journey from northern California. A crane and a crew of 14 hoisted it into place in a well of water.

Teen pop group Before You Exit headlined a night of performances Saturday. “X Factor” singer Josh Levi and “The Voice” contestant Christina Grimmie also performed.

Sallyann Martinez of the Outlets at Anthem, where the tree is on display, said the white fir had to be imported because Arizona doesn’t grow trees this tall.

“It’s from private lumber land. This tree has been watched for about 15 years to make sure it’s running nice and straight and is viable for us,” Martinez said.

The tree was decorated with three miles of lights and 25,000 ornaments and bows over a three-week period. It is topped by a handmade 3-foot-tall copper stars that has 300 miniature lights.

The tree is:

• Taller than the Arizona State Capitol building (90 feet)

• Longer than an NBA court (94 feet)

• Higher than Disneyland’s Splash Mountain ride (87 feet)

• Taller than the iconic “Hollywood” sign (55 feet)

KTAR News’ Jim Cross contributed to this report.

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