SOURCE: Bryant Park Corporation

December 02, 2013 10:37 ET

Bank of America and Bryant Park Support New York Families in Need Through Cherished Holiday Event

Bank of America Winter Village at Bryant Park Spotlights Hunger Relief at The Tree Lighting Show

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwired - December 02, 2013) - This holiday season, Bank of America Winter Village at Bryant Park will dedicate its annual holiday tree lighting event to provide support for families in need. Among those taking the stage and adjacent ice-skating rink on Tuesday, December 3, are New York Yankees Legend Mariano Rivera, and Olympic skaters Sarah Hughes and Johnny Weir. The event helps to kick-off a campaign to support hunger relief for New Yorkers in the five boroughs.

The Tree Lighting Show, now in its eighth year, includes musical performances and figure skating to create an evening worthy of the park's 50-foot Norway Spruce. Joining the celebrated New Yorkers are the Haydenettes, national gold medalists in synchronized skating, Carly Rose Sonenclar, the 14-year old singer who found international acclaim on television's The X Factor, and platinum-selling and Grammy-nominated Big Bad Voodoo Daddy. Skaters have a chance to skate to the swing sounds of Big Bad Voodoo Daddy as the finale.

Also performing are the award-winning Young People's Chorus of New York City, Carlyle Hotel jazz headliner Loston Harris Trio, and The New York Pops Brass Quintet. New York City's 106.7 Lite FM's Bob Bronson and Christine Nagy host the evening's program.

The event is immediately followed by the beginning of the Skate-a-Thon at The Rink, where city residents and visitors alike are invited to lace up their ice skates to raise money for the Food Bank For New York City. Bank of America will pledge a donation to the organization for each minute on the ice, monitored by RFID chips that the skaters can attach to their skates. The company will also contribute the cost of a featured dessert, Gingerbread Cheesecake Lollipops, through a "Dine to Donate" campaign at Celsius, the Winter Village's seasonal restaurant.

"The Food Bank is a lifeline for countless New York City residents, many of whom will spend the holiday season worrying about their next meal," said Jeff Barker, New York City president, Bank of America. "By using The Rink as a fundraising tool, visitors to the Winter Village can help in a simple and exciting way."

A family in Newburgh, New York gifted this year's tree to the park. The spruce is dressed with 30,000 white and red LED lights, along with nearly 3,500 starbursts, balls, snowflakes, and icicle ornaments in wintry silver, pearly white, and iridescent red and blue. The holiday tree will stay lit through Sunday, January 12, 2014.

"The Tree Lighting Show at the Bank of America Winter Village at Bryant Park has always been a way to bring New Yorkers and visitors together at the holidays," says Dan Biederman, president of Bryant Park Corporation. "By joining Bank of America in their support of hunger relief, we extend the definition of community in a dynamic and substantial way."

The Tree Lighting Show takes place on Tuesday, December 3 with music playing throughout the park starting at 5:15 p.m. and the event beginning at 6 p.m.

Following the festivities and flipping of the switch is the Skate-a-Thon running from December 3-8. Those interested in participating, or learning more about the Celsius "Dine to Donate" campaign, can visit the Winter Village website at www.wintervillage.org.

The Winter Village is a seasonal destination that features a 17,000-square-foot ice-skating rink, a glass-enclosed restaurant, and open-air market for holiday shopping under the glow of the city's lights. Located at W. 40th and W. 42nd Streets between Fifth and Sixth Avenues, the holiday village is adjacent to the New York Public Library and a short walk from Times Square and Grand Central Station.

About the Bryant Park Corporation:

Bryant Park Corporation (BPC), a private not-for-profit company, was founded in 1980 to renovate, finance and operate Bryant Park in New York City. BPC is funded by income from events, concessions and corporate sponsors, as well as an assessment on neighboring properties, and does not accept government or philanthropic monies. In addition to providing security and sanitation services and tending the park's lush lawn and seasonal garden displays, BPC provides public amenities and activities, including movable chairs and tables, cafe umbrellas, restaurants, food kiosks, world-class restrooms, and a wide range of free events throughout the year. The Midtown park, conveniently located at 6th Avenue between 40th and 42nd Streets, is visited by more than five million people each year and is one of the busiest public spaces in the world. BPC's Web site, http://www.bryantpark.org, is available for more detailed information and a schedule of upcoming events.

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