2018 marks the 56th year that the Soldiers and Sailors Monument will be decked out for the holidays. The tradition began in the early 1960s when the Indianapolis Christmas Committee proposed that Monument Circle be lit up for the holidays. The group envisioned the transformation of the Soldiers and Sailors Monument into a giant Christmas tree.


The first lighting of the tree took place in 1962. Union electricians from local IBEW No. 481 volunteered to string close to 6,000 lights. To this day, the IBEW continues to volunteer their services annually for installation and removal of the decorations.