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New Year’s Eve in Times Square – Be a part of New York City’s boisterous, joyous countdown to 2011.
New York City’s bustling Times Square annually hosts one of the world’s most famous New Year’s celebrations. In anticipation of the famous ball drop, more than a million revelers throng the square each Dec. 31, jockeying for places and sightlines. Millions more tune in to watch the televised festivities from the comfort of their homes.
Being in Times Square on New Year’s Eve is an experience unto itself. That’s because the square becomes a tightly monitored playpen on the last day of the year. Ball watchers, many arriving early in the day, must learn to exert their own form of control, as public facilities are unavailable and re-entry is a no-no once you leave your section of the square.
But even knowing that the event is part endurance test can’t deter those determined to be part of one of the world’s most-watched celebrations. It’s been that way for more than a century.
In 1907, the first New Year’s Eve ball — made of iron and wood and covered in 100 25-watt bulbs — descended from a flagpole at One Times Square. The ball weighed 700 pounds and measured 5 feet in diameter. Rather puny compared to today’s behemoth. Made of Waterford crystal, the current ball weighs in at 11,875 pounds and is 12 feet in diameter. It descends 77 feet over the course of a minute, coming to rest at the bottom of its pole at the stroke of midnight, grandly ushering in yet another year filled with potential and possibility.
While you're in town, be sure to plan time to see the attractions in the New York CityPASS!