The huge ball made of Waterford crystal that drops at the stroke of midnight on New Year’s Eve will still fall toward Times Square, but for the first time since 1907, no one will be there in person to witness it because of the coronavirus restrictions in New York City.
The New York City Patch website reported on the revised celebration:
Organizers announced in September that Times Square would be closed to the public during the event, marking the first time since its inception in 1907 that throngs of people would not gather in Midtown. The drop was suspended in 1942 and 1943 during World War II, but crowds still gathered in Times Square and marked the new year with a minute of silence, according to the Times Square website.
A live telecast, “Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest 2021,” will air live from Times Square on ABC, starting 8 p.m. Eastern. Times Square will also host a commercial-free webcast on its website starting 6 p.m. Eastern.
Jennifer Lopez will be the headline performer, along with other stars including Billy Porter, Cyndi Lauper and Jimmie Allen.
The Times Square website also announced what this year’s celebration will look like:
Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, NYE 2021 will NOT be open to the public this year — but there will be live performances, and we hope all of you will enjoy the virtual celebrations safely from the comfort of your own home. New Year’s Eve 2021 might look a little different than usual, but one thing that will never change is the ticking of time and the arrival of a New Year at midnight on December 31st. Celebrate with us virtually in an enhanced celebration that will bring Times Square and the Ball Drop to you no matter where you are.
Jamestown, the owner of One Times Square, has created a first-of-its-kind virtual New Year’s Eve experience. Everyone everywhere can start the festivities today and enter a virtual world of Time Square filled with games, music, and art. Then, on December 31st, viewers can tune in for a live broadcast where they can choose from multiple camera feeds to direct their own New Year’s Eve show. Plus, viewers will also get a chance to see other celebrations from around the globe, and hear messages from local leaders and people from dozens of cities from around the world.
Ironically, in an era when businesses in the city are struggling to survive because of the coronavirus lockdown, the cost of the crystal ball seems significant. The 6sqft website reported the cost of the ball is more than $1 million.
The website also revealed that the ball weighs 11,875 pounds, contains 32,256 LED lights, and is made up of 2,688 Waterford crystals.
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