Skip to main content

Signs of Christmas in October: Nation's largest 'tree' goes up in Duluth

  • Author:
  • Updated:

It may only be mid-October, but preparations are already underway for another year of Bentleyville Tour of Lights.

The nation's largest LED tree is now standing tall at the Bayfront Festival Park, thanks to Local Iron Workers 512 and other groups that helped installed the 128-foot structure Saturday, Bentleyville's Facebook page shows.

The tree has over 100,000 LED lights, which are animated to music throughout the free Christmas-themed event, which begins Nov. 21 and runs through Dec. 27, WDIO reports.

It may seem early for some, but for those in the area, the large tree is a sign that Christmas is just around the corner, Russ Whitehouse, who helped install the tree, told Northland's NewsCenter, noting the tree is "putting Duluth on the map."

Last year, a record-setting 240,000 visitors attended the event, organizers estimated, thanks in part to the mild weather throughout December.

Bentleyville isn't the only organization preparing for the holidays before Halloween. Earlier this month, Christmas music started playing on the radio in Duluth – it's called Ho Ho 106.5 FM, and when the holiday season is over, the station says it'll keep playing the tunes year-round.

The Christmas creep

It happens every year, but the holidays seem to start earlier and earlier every year as Christmas displays go up alongside Halloween costumes.

It's a retail trend that's likely here to stay, TIME Magazine reported, and while some argue it's "too early," others say starting before the flakes fly is the smart thing to do.

Organized Home has six reasons to start planning for the holidays early, including the ability to take control over holiday decision making; having time to plan and save for gifts, instead of using credit cards; and it gives people time to make handmade holiday gifts.

Next Up


Charges: Driver had just left local bar before deadly Shakopee crash

Witnesses said they were unable to help the 19-year-old Eden Prairie man who died in the crash after becoming trapped.

Chet Holmgren

Thunder selects Chet Holmgren 2nd overall in NBA Draft

The Minneapolis native becomes the highest-drafted Minnesotan in NBA history.

Screen Shot 2022-06-23 at 2.21.45 PM

One airlifted after crash on rural Scott County highway

The State Patrol shut down Highway 282 in both directions Thursday afternoon.

Flickr - police lights squad siren - Edward Kimmel

Police investigating after two men found dead in Maple Grove

Few details are known about the investigation.

12-web-or-mls-12 Dining room

Gallery: Charming, Northeast Minneapolis Home is perfect for first-time homebuyers

Located in the Holland neighborhood, it's near the Eastside Co-op, tons of amazing restaurants, breweries, and a distillery

US-169 BUS, Shakopee, Minnesota - June 2019 (1)

Eden Prairie 19-year-old killed in crash near Valleyfair is ID'd

Alcohol is believed to be a factor in this crash, involving a 26-year-old driver from Hopkins.

Screen Shot 2022-06-23 at 12.35.25 PM

Man pleads guilty for threatening to kill Hennepin County employees

Peter Robert Berry has a criminal history dating back to the 1970s, according to court records.

Screen Shot 2020-01-02 at 7.54.07 AM

Fourth person sentenced for murder of Minneapolis realtor

Lyndon Wiggins is the fourth person that has been sentenced in the kidnapping and killing of Monique Baugh.


Minnesota's COVID-19 update for Thursday, June 23

The number of Minnesotans up to date on their vaccine has dropped, largely due to kids 6 months to 4 years now eligible in the data.


Man severely burned in house fire near Duluth

The burn victim was airlifted to Minneapolis for advanced care.


Christmas tree crop the best in Minnesota history

If you're thinking about going for a real tree this holiday -- this is the year to do it. The latest report from the Minnesota Christmas Tree Association says the wet spring and summer has resulted in the best growing season the state's ever had.