WASHINGTON, December 5, 2013 — Rush hour traffic around Washington D.C. during a rain storm is always heavy and difficult but tonight there is an additional complication, the National Christmas Tree lighting ceremony and concert.
The tree lighting and concert start this evening at 5 p.m. during the afternoon rush hour. The activities will take place rain or shine on the Ellipse.
Streets on either side of the Ellipse, 15th through 17th are expected to be closed.
Commuters trying to get home should head away from the White House.
Some Metro bus routes will also be affected by the closures and the underground Metro stations nearest to the White House such as Federal Triangle, McPherson Square and Metro Center are expected to be more crowded than usual.
Tickets are required for the tree lighting ceremony and were already distributed through an online lottery.
During the ceremony, entertainers such as Mariah Carey, Aretha Franklin, Avett Brothers and the band Train as well as a military band will perform.
The National Christmas Tree and the Pathway to Peace will be open until January 1, 2014 where a Yule log, a Christmas Manger and model trains will on display. No tickets are required to see the tree other than during the lighting ceremony.