From all of us at Guinness World Records, we'd like to wish all fans, record breakers, visitors to our site, and readers of our book the merriest of Christmases!
We've got some great things coming your way over the next week, including a monthly look back at the Year in World Records. Plus, who knows what exciting stuff is on the way for 2014.
In the meantime, here are a handful of our favorite recent Christmas-related records. Now you have something fun to talk to Aunt June about while you make awkward small talk over the egg nog.
The largest human Christmas tree consisted of 889 participants and was achieved by the City of Lacombe (Canada) in Lacombe, Alberta, Canada, on 29 November 2013. The height of the "tree" was 58.7 m (192 ft 7 in) and the width was 19.9 m (65 ft 3.5 in).
How about an actual Christmas tree? Or, well, how about an actual fake Christmas tree? The tallest artifical Christmas tree measured 52 m (170 ft 7 in) and was covered in green PVC artificial foliage. The "Peace Tree" was designed by Grupo Sonae Distribuição Brasil and displayed in Moinhos de Vento Park, Porto Alegre, Brazil from 1 December 2001 until 6 January 2002. The tree featured 3,000 Christmas ball ornaments and 200 stobo lamps.
What would Christmas be without a delicious and architecturally sound gingerbread house? It would be nothing at Guinness World Records unless it was truly special, and that's just what the Traditions Club of Bryan, Texas, gave us last month. They built t he largest ever gingerbread house, with an internal volume of 1,110.1 m³ (39,201.8 ft³). The house was 18.28 m (60 ft) long, 12.8 m (42 ft) wide and 3.07 m (10.1 ft) tall at its highest point. And you can check out time-lapse video of its construction.
We of course have to shout out the big fella on Christmas: Santa Claus.
He's always on watch, of course, but Saint Nick had quite the task last year, when he received the longest wish list to Santa. It consisted of 75,954 wishes, was collated by MINI and presented to Santa Claus himself at his official post office in Rovaniemi, Finland, on 5 December 2012. The wish list contained requests from people of 30 countries and itself weighed 160 kg (352.7 lb)!
But the Santa Claus can't do it all alone on this special night. That's why he naturally has an army of helpers assisting him around the world. We here at GWR remember the one time 13,000 of them came together in Derry City, Northern Ireland, UK. That was on Dec. 9, 2007 and marks to this day the largest-ever gathering of Santa Claus.
Enjoy the holiday everyone. May you find what you hope for under the tree, but more importantly, find yourself around that tree with the loved ones who mean the most to you. Merry Christmas!