What happened to the Macy’s Great Tree? This is what we’ve learned – WSB-TV Channel 2


ATLANTA — It is a holiday tradition that dates back to 1948, and now we’ve learned that there is no more Macy’s Great Tree.

For the past 74 years, families across metro Atlanta gathered for the lighting of the Great Tree each year to ring in the holiday season.

Now, Channel 2 Action News has learned that Macy’s has retired the tree lighting.

For many of the years that the tree lighting happened, Channel 2 Action News aired the lighting live.

“Each year, we evaluate our event programming and how we can best serve the metro-Atlanta community. Recently we made the decision to retire our Great Tree Lighting at our Macy’s Lenox Square store. As Atlanta’s holiday shopping destination, Macy’s Lenox Square will continue to welcome customers in store to give love and give style this holiday season,” Macy’s said in a statement.

The lighting of the Great Tree started in 1948 when Rich’s department store put a large pine tree on top of its flagship store in downtown Atlanta, lighting it on Thanksgiving night.


The tree lighting remained there until Rich’s store closed in 1991 and the tree was moved to Underground Atlanta.

In 2000, the Great Tree was moved Lenox Square where it has remained a holiday tradition for new and old until 2022.

The news comes as the city also announced that the annual Peach Drop had been canceled for this year.

“This year, the City dedicated our resources to celebrating the 50th anniversary of Hip Hop and other local activities directly serving the community. While a worthy tradition in the past, the Peach Drop has not been an annual event since 2017. Each year is different, and we can always reevaluate next year,” a spokesperson for Atlanta Mayor Andre Dicken’s Office said.

Macy’s said in its statement to Channel 2 Action News that is still honoring its history with giving back to the Atlanta community.

“Macy’s continues to honor the rich history and holiday traditions of the metro-Atlanta community by giving back to national and local non-profits, including Big Brothers Big Sisters of America, Clark Atlanta University, Student Conservation Association, Women in Technology, TechBridge, Families First, Children’s Shelter of Atlanta, and more organizations focused on creating a more equitable and sustainable future.”


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