A Nova Scotia delegation is bringing more than tidings and good cheer to the annual Christmas tree lighting in Boston today, Nov. 30. For the past 35 years, Nova Scotia has provided a giant evergreen tree, donated by a private landowner, to the people of Boston to thank them for their outpouring of assistance after the 1917 Halifax Explosion. The event has traditionally been used to express gratitude, to solidify friendships and to promote tourism. For the last several years, tourism officials and business partners have teamed to also promote trade and investment, and to strategically position Nova Scotia in the important New England market. “This is a perfect opportunity to promote all that Nova Scotia has to offer to a receptive audience in lucrative market,” said Len Goucher, Minister of Tourism, Culture and Heritage, who is representing Premier Rodney MacDonald at the event. “We’re building on our historic ties with the people of Boston to promote Nova Scotia’s beauty and culture, our convenient transportation links — including the new US pre-clearance at Halifax International Airport — our growing IT sector, our highly educated workforce and more.” Before the official tree lighting ceremony, Nova Scotia partners, including the Department of Tourism, Culture and Heritage, the Nova Scotia “Come to life” initiative, Nova Scotia Business Inc., and Destination Halifax, will host about 200 business clients at a Nova Scotia reception. At the tree-lighting ceremony on the Boston Common, young Cape Breton performers Ciaran and Fiona MacGillivray of the Cottars, along with twin brothers Keith and Kyle MacDonald, will provide Bostonians with a taste of authentic Nova Scotia culture. They will be included in the televised portion of the ceremony, which can be seen from 8 p.m. to 9 p.m. AST on Boston’s ABC affiliate, Channel 5 WCVB, carried by some Nova Scotia cable providers. While in Boston, representatives from the “Come to life” initiative will host a sounding board session. The Boston sounding board is one of four advisory groups that provides input on how Nova Scotia is being received in the board’s market, and gives advice on how the province can best capitalize on opportunities within that market. The meeting will provide an update on brand programs, coming plans for marketing and communications in Boston, and an opportunity for input and feedback on topics relating to Nova Scotia. Nova Scotia Business Inc. will also conduct a trade mission from Nov. 28 to Dec. 1 to coincide with the tree-lighting event. During the mission, five Nova Scotia companies Brainiac Games Inc.; Dover Flour; Lomans Custom Kitchens Inc.; MacLeod Resources Ltd.; and Terry Hawkins Industries Ltd. will have an opportunity to meet with pre-qualified potential customers, partners, agents, distributers, and other key contacts in the region.