NYC & Company, the official marketing, tourism
and partnership organization for New York City, has unveiled the
activities planned for the 2009 New Year’s Eve festivities.
The year-end celebration brings hundreds of
thousands of people to Times Square, one of the most famous
gathering spots in the world. As tourists and residents watch the
world-famous New Year’s Eve Ball descend from the flagpole atop
One Times Square at midnight on the last day of the year, the eyes
of the world are squarely on New York City.
“There is no
more exciting place to be on New Year’s Eve than Times Square in
New York City - and revelers will find even more space to spread
out, with this year’s closure of Times Square to traffic,” said
George Fertitta, CEO of NYC & Company.
The Times Square
New Year’s Eve Ball is a 12-foot geodesic sphere weighing 11,875
pounds. Covered in 2,668 Waterford crystals and powered by 32,256
Philips LUXEON Rebel LED lights, the ball is capable of creating a
palette of more than 16 million vibrant colours and billions of
patterns, producing a spectacular kaleidoscopic effect atop One
Times Square. The ball has been on display since 1 January 2009, and
is a year-round attraction for visitors from around the world.
More than 100 million television
viewers in the United States and more than 1 billion
worldwide are expected to watch the ball drop, bringing
even more visibility to the city.
The schedule for the New Year’s Eve festivities is
4pm: Revelers start arriving
late in the afternoon on New Year's Eve. By approximately 4pm, the
“bow tie” of Times Square (42nd–47th Streets, between Broadway and
Seventh Avenue) becomes a focal point for the festivities. The
NYPD will direct revelers to gather in separate viewing sections.
As one section fills up, police will direct new arrivals to the
next section. As the evening progresses, revelers continue to fill
the Times Square neighbourhood along Broadway and Seventh Avenue,
and as far north as Central Park.
6–6:03 pm: The celebration
begins with the lighting and raising of the New Year’s Eve Ball
atop One Times Square.
11:59pm - The 60-Second Countdown:
New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and the Times Square 2010
special guest will push the Waterford crystal
button that signals the descent of the New Year’s Eve Ball, and
lead the 60-second countdown to the New Year atop the Countdown
Stage at Duffy Square (the center island from Broadway to Seventh
Avenue between 46th and 47th Streets).
2010 Sign: At the stroke of midnight, the lights on the New
Year’s Eve Ball are turned off as the numerals “2010” are
illuminated high above Times Square.
Several events will
take place leading up to the ball drop, including:
Confetti Wishing Wall: The Confetti Wishing Wall will be at the
Times Square Information Center, located at Broadway between 46th
and 47th Streets). New Year’s Eve is a time when people of every
background come together to express a collective hope for renewal;
a yearning for a better personal or global future can sometimes
take the form of resolutions or wishes. With that in mind,
visitors to the Information Center are invited to write their
wishes and resolutions for 2010 on pieces of paper, which will be
displayed on the wall. For those who cannot make it to Times
Square to add their wishes, a virtual wall has been created at
on December 31, the wish papers will become part of the confetti
that rains down on the city.
Day: The co-organizers of New Year’s Eve in Times Square
(Times Square Alliance and Countdown Entertainment) are
inviting the public to say good-bye, once and for all,
to those bad memories at the third annual Good Riddance
Day. Shredders will be available for use in Duffy Square
so everyone can discard their distasteful, embarrassing
and downright depressing memories from 2009.
For those seeking other New Year’s Eve
entertainment options beyond Times Square, Circle Line
Sightseeing Cruises is offering a New Year’s Eve party
cruise, which includes a full open bar, hors d’oeuvres,
a nonstop DJ, party favors and a champagne toast at
midnight. Tickets for the three-hour cruise are $120,
and guests must be 18 for the cruise, and 21 to drink
If a New Year’s Eve run around Central
Park appeals to you, check out the Emerald Nuts Midnight
Run, hosted by New York Road Runners. There will be a DJ
and dancing at 10pm, a costume parade and contest at
11pm, and fireworks and a four-mile race at midnight.
Brooklyn residents and visitors can take part in
the borough’s largest New Year’s Eve party at Grand Army Plaza,
which will include fireworks and live music. The best viewing
locations for the fireworks are within Grand Army Plaza, along
West Drive in Prospect Park, and along Prospect Park West between
Grand Army Plaza and Ninth Street.
With so much to choose from, it is
little surprise that New York is one of the most
exciting places to spend New Year’s Eve, just be sure to
book your hotel early!
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