PICS: Christmas has arrived in the US with the lighting of the Rockefeller Centre tree

A massive Norway spruce has been lit up in a tradition that ushers in Christmastime in New York City.

Mayor Bill de Blasio flipped the switch on Wednesday night to light the Rockefeller Centre Christmas Tree following a televised extravaganza that featured performances by Diana Ross and Tony Bennett.

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The 22-metre-tall tree is decorated with 8 kilometres of multicoloured LED lights and a 408-kilograms Swarovski crystal star. Rockefeller Centre has hosted the ceremony since 1931.

Police officers were plentiful, and spectators were funnelled through security.

The 75-year-old tree was donated by a couple in Wallkill, 100 kilometres north of the city.

It will remain on display until 7 January. Then it will be given to Habitat for Humanity to help build homes.

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Check out the videos and pics from the ceremony below:

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