View Full Version : New Year in Times Square

January 1st, 2002, 11:22 AM
The crowd in front of the Bertelsmann Building (http://www.wirednewyork.com/bertelsmann.htm)


Britney Spears enjoys Pepsi on Times Square (http://www.wirednewyork.com/times_square/default.htm)


The view from Broadway


The view from Seventh Avenue


December 31st, 2002, 04:59 PM
The pictures above are exactly one year old. Here is a picture of Times Square (http://www.wirednewyork.com/times_square/default.htm)*today, preparing for New Year celebrations.

Happy New Year, everyone.


January 1st, 2003, 02:08 AM
Happy New Year.


January 1st, 2003, 02:13 AM

Auckland, New Zealand.


January 1st, 2003, 02:26 AM
GREAT PICS! *I might be mistaken, but I believe that those are this year's pics, am I right Christian? *EXCELLENT!!! :) :) :)

(Edited by amigo32 at 2:56 am on Jan. 1, 2003)

January 1st, 2003, 05:05 AM
Sydney is really spectacular. But of course, the best ambiance was probably at Times Square.

January 1st, 2003, 05:14 AM
Yes, amigo.

January 2nd, 2005, 09:48 PM
Waiting for the New Year to arrive - 12 hours to the ball drop. 31 December 2004.




New Year comes to Times Square - in front of Marriott Marquis (http://www.wirednewyork.com/hotels/marriott_marquis/).


January 3rd, 2005, 12:27 AM
Great pictures - thanks :D I just don't understand something - do the pictures in the 1st post are new? Where are the pictures from this year?

October 27th, 2006, 04:18 PM
AM New York
October 27, 2006

Dick Clark plans to rock in another new year

Associated Press

As he did last year, Dick Clark will co-host the annual "New Year's Rockin' Eve" celebration from Times Square on Dec. 31.

The former "American Bandstand" host, now 76, will join Ryan Seacrest and musical guest Christina Aguilera to ring in 2007 before a national television audience of millions. Clark missed the show two years ago when he suffered a stroke but returned to the holiday staple last New Year's Eve.

Seacrest, the 31-year-old host of "American Idol," handled co-hosting duties last year and is expected to eventually succeed Clark as the show's host.

"Dick and Ryan will be in New York," Paul Shefrin, a spokesman for Dick Clark Productions said Friday. He also confirmed the appearance by the platinum-selling Aguilera, a Staten Island native known for her Grammy-winning hit "Beautiful."

Clark originated the New Year's Eve program back in 1972. The only show he missed followed his Dec. 6, 2004, stroke.

On the Net: http://www.dickclarkproductions.com

Copyright 2006 AM New York

October 4th, 2007, 02:49 PM
New York Times
October 4, 2007

A New Ball for New Year’s, Brighter Yet More Efficient


Employees of Hudson Scenic Studios and Landmark Signs and Electric work on the new New Year’s ball in a building in Yonkers.

When the ball atop 1 Times Square drops this year, signaling the start of 2008 and delighting the million or so people wedged into the surrounding streets, it will mark the 100th anniversary of a venerated tradition. It will also mark the debut of a new ball that will be the height of high-tech modernity and will be, in today’s environmental parlance, green.

The new aluminum skeleton and the exterior “skin” made of Waterford crystal panels that covers thousands of light-emitting diodes known as L.E.D.’s will mean a brighter and more energy-efficient ball.

While last year’s ball resembled a rounded porcupine with halogen quills, this year’s ball has a smooth surface capable of displaying nearly 16 million different colors. An impressive range, but Focus Lighting, the company that decides how the ball is lighted, plans to limit the palette to 25 vibrant colors.

“People are going to be blown away by the variety and the saturation of colors,” said Christine Hope, the project lighting designer at Focus Lighting who has been working on the new ball since last October.

Besides more intricate colors, the new ball can also display video, which for now means an image of a flickering flame or the rippling stars and stripes of the American flag. That is a lot more than the old ball with its four colors, red, blue, green and white, could do.

The new ball weighs about 1,200 pounds and has 672 triangular Waterford crystal panels in a pattern the company calls “let there be light” on the inside and the outside to best reflect light. Additional pyramid-shaped mirrors on the ball’s exterior capitalize on the crystal’s refraction.

The old ball had 600 bulbs; the new one has 9,576 L.E.D.’s. The old ball’s light level was 291,541 lumens; the new ball’s level is 625,033 lumens.

But even though it is twice as bright, the new ball is easier on the environment. Each L.E.D. on the ball generates the same amount of light as one of last year’s bulbs but uses 87 percent fewer watts. The net result is that the new ball will use about 15,000 watts compared to the old ball’s 30,000 watts.

In other words, power up 10 toasters, keep them toasting for six hours — the length of time the ball is lighted — and that will be the equivalent amount of electricity. “With half the amount of power, you’re getting twice the amount of light, so it’s four times more efficient,” said Brett Andersen, general manager of Focus Lighting.

The first ball was created in 1907 by Walter F. Palmer, the chief electrician for The New York Times at the behest of the publisher Adolph S. Ochs, who wanted a spectacular midnight show in Times Square. Historically, dropping a ball to synchronize clocks is nothing new. Beginning in the early 1800s, iron balls were lowered from poles in port at noon each day so sailors could set their clocks and calculate the rate of error of their chronometers.

This ball will be the fifth iteration. The earliest balls were made of iron and wood until aluminum was used for the third ball, in 1955. That aluminum ball was shaped into an apple for several years during the 1980s, and then in 1995 it was made flashier with the addition of rhinestones.

At 11:59, the ball drops 77 feet in 60 seconds. Until 1995, the balls were lowered by six men, but since then they have been lowered by cables controlled by computers. A second computer is in place as a backup that can seamlessly switch over without missing a cue. And if the computer’s power cord were to become accidentally unplugged, there is a backup power supply. But keeping the ball lighted rests in the hands of Con Edison: if the power goes out in Times Square, the ball will be dark.

And how much crystal is in the new ball? Peter R. Cheyney, the director of corporate communications for Waterford Wedgwood U.S.A., guesses it equals about 500 crystal goblets, which at $60 per comes out to $30,000. The materials for the ball are donated by Waterford and Royal Philips Electronics, and the event itself is produced by Countdown Entertainment and the Times Square Alliance. Jeffrey Straus, the president of Countdown Entertainment, estimates the ball’s worth at $1.1 million.

And after making its first public appearance, the ball will rest in a vault 50 feet below 1 Times Square, beside the previous ball.

Copyright 2007 The New York Times Company

October 14th, 2007, 07:45 AM
Would you recommend Times Square on New Years eve? I'm staying in Times Square but i must admit the idea of standing around for hours doesn't really appeal that much. Are there many other activities around times square before midnight?

October 14th, 2007, 02:41 PM
Most New Yorkers wouldn't think of going to Times Square for New Years eve.
Maybe years ago, but now it's about metal pens that corral people together like cattle, legions of cops, and no chance to use a bathroom. Some idea of fun.
I think most local people find a party to go to or spend it at their favorite hang out or nightspot. If I were you, I would head away from Times Square and check out the bars and parties elsewhere, maybe downtown.

Most visitors, however, feel they have to go to Times Square for the experience at least once.

October 21st, 2007, 02:36 PM
thanks for the reply. I'm pretty sure i'm gonna avoid times square that particular evening. Are there any events in Central Park?

December 19th, 2007, 03:16 PM
Associated Press
December 19, 2007

NYC offers to shred bad 2007 memories before the New Year

In a new twist on celebrating the New Year, the New York City sanitation department and a Times Square business group are giving people the chance to not only put bad 2007 memories behind them, but shred them.

For one hour Dec. 28, participants can bid good riddance to everything from photos of ex-lovers to lousy report cards when the Times Square Alliance and the New York Department of Sanitation set up shredders in the Times Square Visitors Center.

Recycling bins will be available for items that cannot be shredded, like embarrassing fashion mistakes, annoying CDs and irresistible — and fattening — chocolate chip cookies. The organizers say they also will provide stationery for passers-by to jot down memories they wish would go away.

A grand prize of $250 will be awarded to the person deemed to be most creative in letting go of old baggage.

On the Net: Good Riddance Day (http://www.TimesSquareNYC.org)

Copyright © 2007 Associated Press

December 20th, 2007, 12:13 PM
I'm interested to see what the $250.00 winner will bring in.

December 20th, 2007, 01:03 PM
Could we as a group take in the 911 conspiracy (http://www.wirednewyork.com/forum/showthread.php?t=5252) thread for shredding :confused:

December 20th, 2007, 02:07 PM
thanks for the reply. I'm pretty sure i'm gonna avoid times square that particular evening. Are there any events in Central Park?

sorry I did not see this previously.

Central Park is actually really nice on NY's Eve, in fact it is where we normally go. We usually get there around 11 PM or so.. they are just finishing up a 1/2 marathon at that time. There is usually a band playing in the bandstand area, and a fireworks display.

It is relatively subdued compared to Time Square, not overly crowded and generally sane. Nice without a lot of splash.

December 20th, 2007, 06:36 PM
sssshhhhh ^ ;)

December 31st, 2007, 08:45 AM
December 31, 2007

To Mark 100 New Years, a Much Brighter Ball

James Estrin/The New York Times
Tests of the New Year’s ball, loaded with
Waterford crystal, were conducted on Sunday.


It was not always a midnight kaleidoscope of roaring multitudes and a 1,200-pound sphere clad in Waterford crystal, with 30,000 watts of light-emitting diodes to dazzle America. A century ago Monday, the first New Year’s ball descended in Times Square and a tradition was born, with modest crowds cheering a five-foot iron globe studded with 216 electric lamps.

There were years when the occasion and its globular star had to be subdued. In 1917, the square was blacked out for a wartime coal shortage, and while the ball was dropped, The New York Times reported: “The New Year slunk in with rubber shoes on, coming upon a lightless, noiseless and frigid Broadway.”

In 1943 and 1944, World War II laid a melancholy hand on the celebrations. There were no glowing balls. Instead, plane-spotter beams crisscrossed the sky, and the crowds, after midnight cheers, silently remembered Americans overseas. In 2001 the specter of Sept. 11 hovered over the proceedings.

But for millions of New Yorkers and visitors to the city, and in the television age for most Americans and audiences abroad, the ball-dropping has been a euphoric occasion in nearly all of the 100 years since the first globe was created by Walter F. Palmer, the chief electrician for The Times, at the behest of the publisher, Adolph S. Ochs, who wanted a spectacular midnight show in the square.

There were antecedents of a sort. Since the early 1800s, mariners could set ships’ clocks by the lowering of iron balls in ports at noon daily. But in 1907, three years after Longacre Square had been renamed, the idea was celebratory and promotional, with crowds eddying around the 26-story Times Tower to watch the ball descend on its 70-foot flagpole at midnight to mark the new year.

While The Times occupied the trapezoidal tower from 1905 to 1913, when it moved to a larger “annex” on West 43rd Street, the ball-dropping tradition continued, even after the building was sold years later.

The balls were made of iron and then wood until 1955, when aluminum was used for a third version. For several years in the 1980s, the aluminum was shaped like an apple. In 1995, it was given a flashier look with rhinestones. Until then, the ball had been lowered by a half-dozen men, but in recent years cables controlled by computers have been used.

The ball that will descend Monday atop 1 Times Square is a new, $1.1 million high-tech creation, with a skeleton of aluminum and a skin composed of 672 Waterford crystal panels and additional pyramid-shaped mirrors to best reflect the light of 9,576 diodes generating 625,033 lumens. That is more than double the dazzle-power of last year’s ball, which looked like a porcupine with 600 halogen-quill bulbs.

Security, a major concern in the age of terrorism, was taking shape on Sunday. For blocks around the square, metal barriers were in place to funnel crowds, and blue wooden sawhorses were stacked on their sides, in reserve, along the curbs of Broadway. Undercover officers in plain clothes will be in the crowds, along with thousands of uniformed officers. Others will be posted atop buildings overlooking the scene.

Alcohol and backpacks are forbidden in the area. Traffic will be blocked off Monday afternoon and parking is banned on most streets. Video surveillance cameras will be used to monitor the activity. Devices to detect airborne chemical or radiological elements are set up, and a helicopter with sophisticated communications equipment will hover overhead.

Police Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly said on Sunday that security for the celebration has been increased, even as crowds have become better behaved. “The nature of the crowd is more of a tourist crowd than 10 years ago,” he said in an interview. “It is an entertainment event from 8 o’clock on, as opposed to years ago, when it was a lot of waiting and a lot of drinking.”

By midafternoon on Sunday, Times Square was already swelling with people in a celebratory mood, watched over by officers and cajoled by entrepreneurs hawking tours and souvenirs, knockoff perfumes and New Year’s Eve glasses with the big zeros in “2008” for eye holes. Crews were setting up spotlights, speakers on lampposts and sound stages for a lengthy roster of entertainers.

The ball was not yet visible from the street.

But a little boy perched on a man’s shoulder glimpsed something. “I think I see it, Daddy,” he said.

Other people pointed toward the sky — was it a bird? a plane? Superman? — and gestured with circled fingertips, as if guiding the great ball in its agonizingly slow descent: 77 feet in 60 seconds, starting at 11:59 p.m.

Trymaine Lee, Toby Lyles and Michael Wilson contributed reporting.

Copyright 2007 The New York Times Company

January 1st, 2008, 09:04 PM
That new LED ball was absolutely spectacular. I tuned in specifically to see it and it was definitely impressive.

The kind of high-tech light display/flashes/images/colors it was able to show off is a vast improvement over the past balls, which wasn't able to do much other than "light up."

Truly 21st-century.

November 11th, 2008, 12:03 AM
Yahoo! News

New Times Square ball to hang around for Halloween

By JIM FITZGERALD, Associated Press Writer Jim Fitzgerald, Associated Press Writer – Mon Nov 10, 7:54 pm ET

http://d.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/p/ap/20081111/capt.bb096a4b592a496aa8dfd7e7ad293979.new_year_s_t imes_square_ball_nysw109.jpg?x=213&y=321&xc=1&yc=1&wc=271&hc=408&q=100&sig=tXs5NS4TzpAAD6yniZUHJg--
AP – Doug Lehman helps to attach the last pieces of Waterford crystal to the 2008 New Year's Eve ball in Yonkers.

YONKERS, N.Y. – Next month, it'll be the famous New Year's Eve ball. Next year, it could be the Great Pumpkin.

A bigger, brighter Waterford crystal ball will usher in 2009 above Times Square, then remain in place all year to celebrate other holidays including Valentine's Day, the Fourth of July and Halloween, organizers said Monday.

"You won't have to be here on Dec. 31 anymore to see the Times Square ball," said Jeff Straus, president of Countdown Entertainment. "You can come any time now and it will be up there like a jewel, every day. And we expect to have special programming for special days."

The new ball, which was being assembled Monday at a studio in Yonkers, is 12 feet in diameter and weighs nearly 6 tons. Last year's ball was 6 feet across and less than a ton.

The flagpole that was used for previous balls wasn't considered sturdy enough, so a new shaft was built, and steel bracing was added to the building beneath it, 1 Times Square.

"We pretty much had to redesign the top of the building," Straus said.

The ball is a geodesic dome built of 2,468 Waterford crystal triangles, each etched with a stylized starburst or a stylized angel, Waterford spokesman Peter Cheyney said.

The made-in-Ireland triangles, about 5 inches on a side and half an inch thick, combine to make a translucent ball that serves as a canvas for a computerized light show that will begin at about 6 p.m. New Year's Eve, six hours before the ball's minute-long descent marks the new year.

Inside, the ball is filled with electric cables, heat sinks and fans, but outside it seems fragile. At its highest, the ball will be 475 feet above Times Square.

"When we first got involved with the idea of a crystal New Year's ball in 1999, our lawyer said, `Are you crazy? What if it breaks?'" Cheyney said.

"But we've tested this ball for winds up to 140 mph, for temperatures ranging from minus 20 to 120. They're crystals, but they're tough."

Cheyney brought 50 spare triangles, just in case, and has needed one or two of them when workers screwed the crystals onto the aluminum frame a little too tightly.

Doug Lehman, of Teaneck, N.J., was screwing on crystals — carefully — Monday morning. Lehman, a worker for Hudson Scenic Studio, a theatrical construction company, said he'd been to several New Year's Eve celebrations in Times Square, "and it's great to get an up-close look like this."

"They say a billion people will see this," he said. "If I go this year it'll be something special."

Next to him, another worker was attaching cables — there seemed to be miles of cables — to the back of the crystals. Each triangle has 12 energy-efficient, long-lived LED lights behind it; three each of red, white, blue and green, which can be combined into 16 million colors.

On Monday, technicians were running through several of the programs that might be seen on New Year's Eve — stars, a rainbow, a waving American flag.

Brett Andersen, of Focus Lighting Inc., waxed poetic about how his computers could represent daybreak on the ball: "deep purples and blues, then trending toward violets and reds, then sunrise in amber and the brighter colors."

It's the seventh ball in the 101-year history of ball-dropping at Times Square. It's being paid for privately, said publicist Thomas Chiodo. Straus estimated the cost at several million dollars.

The New Year's Eve light program will run itself once it's turned on, Anderson said, but he'll be up on the roof anyway with all the computer equipment. A second server will back up the main server in case anything goes wrong, and a default program will kick in if the second server fails, he said.

"We have to be prepared," he said. "If there's a mistake, everybody will see it. I mean everybody."

Copyright © 2008 Yahoo! Inc. All rights reserved.

December 16th, 2008, 06:57 AM
It should be great atmosphere there :) (http://newyearin.com) I really would like to manage to go this year. Wish me luck! :rolleyes:

December 21st, 2008, 10:40 PM
It should be great atmosphere there :) (http://newyearin.com) I really would like to manage to go this year. Wish me luck! :rolleyes:I will watch New Year's in Times Square on TV since I live in Los Angeles.

May 21st, 2009, 10:19 AM
Hey Guys

I'm travelling all the way from Australia to spend some time in NY for New Years, and obiviously getting really excited...

Just a question though, the Dick Clark Rockin Eve Party from Times Square - Is that Free or you have to purchase tickets to be in a good area???


May 21st, 2009, 10:26 AM
It's free. Have fun!

May 21st, 2009, 01:01 PM
I will fly from LAX to JFK and I will be in Times Square for New Year's celebration sometime next decade.

May 21st, 2009, 05:47 PM
^ When you come, post some pictures.

We promise to be patient.

May 21st, 2009, 06:00 PM
I've lived here most of my life but never been to TS for New Year's Eve. Something about being trapped behind barricades for hours on end in freezing weather, while having to piss in a bottle just doesn't seem appealing. But that's just me.

May 21st, 2009, 06:28 PM
Not to mention that they don't let you drink there anymore...:o

May 21st, 2009, 11:13 PM
I don't drink that often. I won't drink at Times Square for good and even during New Year's.

May 22nd, 2009, 01:52 PM
I did it once with visitors who really really wanted to go. It was for the year 2000, and I figured if ever there was a time to do the New Years in Times Square thing, it was then. Remember it was a high security year - even before Sept. 11 everyone was sure there would be some sort of terrorist attack. But we saw Rudi and Hillary mingling with the crowd and figured it was safe enough. Undercover cops mingled through the crowd too but pretty much ignored the low-key partying going on everywhere. Bigger fish to fry?

Once was enough for me, but it was definitely unforgettable and I wouldn't ever deter anyone from doing it. The people with me were absolutely blown away, not only by the sensory spectacle of it all, but by the smooth operation and the professionalism and friendliness of the cops. I was not expecting that either, to be honest, but they really do a good job. The barricades keep you from being crushed, and it wasn't claustrophobic at all. I was very proud of our city that night. Over a million people from all over the world not only reasonably well behaved but having fun. Your surroundings keep you amply stimulated and anything but bored. Even though no toilets were made available, people who really had to go somehow found a way out and back in through the barricades, so there were very few negatives. However, the advice I would give to people is to try NOT to have to go to the bathroom (don't drink, wait until afterwards, or at least until midnight). You may or may not find it worth it all in the end - I did, to my own astonishment.

One of the most impressive things for me was how incredibly fast it cleared out after the midnight celebration. Fast, easy, no wait whatsoever. Completely opposite of the National Mall for the Inauguration, where you could barely move trying to get out.

And now, every year when I'm watching the ball drop on t.v. I can totally relate to everyone in that crowd. They really are having a great time.

May 22nd, 2009, 04:50 PM
My advice would be get there early to get in times square. I tried it one year and ended way up broadway and it wasnt so great. Plus we had all been drinking and needed to pee, and it was only about 7pm.

November 16th, 2013, 05:29 AM

Behind the Scenes with the Times Square New Year’s Eve Ball

by Ben Helmer


While most jaded New Yorkers might be cynical toward anything Times Square (http://untappedcities.com/tag/times-square/), several minds were changed during last week’s Atlas Obscura Tour (http://www.atlasobscura.com/). The ball, normally seen from afar, was other-worldly up close.


As you ascend to the roof of the Walgreens Tower at 1 Times Square, you’ll see an access door. Opening it, you’re outside, a glow emanating from atop a flight of stairs. Every surface around you is made of see-through metal grate, and, combined with that mysterious light, you might feel like a part of the movie Alien; Certainly miles away from Times Square.

Yet walk up those steps, and you’re face-to-face with a New York icon: The New Years Eve Ball.


Made of Waterford Crystal and LEDs, this 12-foot in diameter ball weighs nearly 12,000 pounds and is completely computer controlled. As you can imagine, a lot of detail is lost when standing a minimum of 395 feet away, the height of the tower. During the tour, Jeff Straus, president of Countdown Entertainment, went over several historical iterations of the ball, as well as the various themed crystal triangles which compose the ball. Each year, different themes are introduced, such as “Let there be peace” or “Let there be Love.” Each feature their own design, although this can only be seen up-close.

At twenty-five stories, the building on which the ball rests was home to The New York Times (http://untappedcities.com/2012/12/06/history-of-streets-the-great-white-way/) for less than ten years, just long enough to have Times Square named for it, as well as starting the New Years Eve “Ball Drop” tradition. Those unimpressed might be more interested in previous traditions. According to Straus, during New Years, revelers would throw bricks into the air, agitating the elders of Trinity Church (http://untappedcities.com/2013/09/20/downtown-doodler-history-trinity-church-nyc-archidoodle/), where celebrations were held prior to 1904.