Report by Paula Antolini, December 31, 2020, 4:01PM EDT
HAPPY NEW YEAR to all our readers!
The New Year 2021 will once again have the ball drop in Times Square in New York City, but this time without the cheering crowds, which will be the first time since 1907 that there will be no pubic attendance. Instead the big countdown and ball drop will be broadcast live online and on TV. Authorities are urging partygoers to stay home and ring in the 2021 New year from the comfort of your home.
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Special guests will be allowed such as front line workers, who have been invited, otherwise barriers have been strategically placed to keep crowds away.
USA Today reports: “Police will still roll out heavy weapons teams, explosive-sniffing dogs, drones and sand trucks. But it has planned a drastically scaled-back presence in Times Square, including an 80% reduction in its typical workforce assigned to the area. ‘We always have to prepare for the worst in terms of counterterrorism overlays,’ Police Commissioner Dermot Shea said, ‘but the crowds will not be like they were in other years.’ “
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Temperatures are supposed to be in the 30’s tonight at midnight while the ball drops.
New Years Eve 2021: How to watch ball drop live from NYC Times Square online or on TV
According to al.com: “The Times Square Alliance and Countdown Entertainment are teaming for a commercial-free webcast and TV pool feed of the ball drop. Headlining the event will be singer Andra Day who will perform her single ‘Rise Up.’ There will also be live performances by Gloria Gaynor, Pitbull, Anitta, Jennifer Lopez, Billy Porter, Cyndi Lauper, Jimmie Allen, Machine Gun Kelly, The Waffle Crew, and USO Show Troupe. Host is Jonathan Bennett of ‘Mean Girls’ and Hallmark Holiday film’s ‘The Christmas House.’ Events will start with the Ball Raising at 6 p.m. EST (5 p.m. CST) on Dec. 30, 2020 and end at 12:15 a.m. EST (11:15 p.m. CST) on Jan. 1, 2021. The show will be streamed live on multiple websites, including TimesSquareNYC.org, NewYearsEve.nyc, Livestream.com/2021, and TimesSquareBall.net. The ball drop will also air on CNN, Fox, NBC, TBS and many other networks. You can also watch on fubo or Hulu.
Newsmax ‘HAPPY NEW YEAR’: Join Newsmax TV’s special coverage of New Year’s Eve beginning at 10 PM ET. Watch LIVE on Newsmax TV: http://nws.mx/tv
OANN (One America News Network): Visit KlowdTV and stream OAN and many other TV channels LIVE on your desktop or mobile device without a contract, offering flexibility and affordability. Sign up for a free-trial! You can find One America News Network on the national providers:
AT&T U-verse – 208 (SD) and 1208 (HD)
CenturyLink PRISM – 208 (SD) and 1208 (HD)
DirecTV – 347
GCI – 64 (SD) and 703 (HD)
Verizon FiOS – 116 (SD) and 616 (HD)
Here is where else you can find OAN in Connecticut.
Frontier Communications in Wallingford on Ch. 208 (SD) and 1208 (HD)
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The History of the Times Square Ball
The tradition of the Times Square New Year’s Eve celebration has gone on for 105 years, since the New Year’s celebration in 1905 in Times Square, and the ball drop began in 1907. The exception was in 1942 and 1943 when there was a voluntary dim-out, not wanting to light up the skyline for the German submarines out in the ocean. Instead, in those two years they rang chimes. Up until 1995 there were 6 men raising and lowering the ball with ropes.
There have been 7 versions of the ball. From 1907 to 1919, which was made of iron and wood and weighed 700 pounds.
In 1920 they made the ball lighter, at 400 pounds, with an iron frame, with the same amount of lights, 100 25-watt lightbulbs.
In 1954 they created an aluminum frame with 180 light bulbs.
In 1985 the white bulbs were replaced with red, and a green stem added at the top, for the “I Love NY” campaign, but it was still the same ball.
In 1995 the ball was redesigned using the aluminum frame wrapped in an aluminum skin, gave it computer controls, halogen lamps, strobes, and a new lighting effect called the “glitter ball.” It also had 10,000 rhinestones. With all the fancy technology the ball was two seconds late, a big controversy at the time, but the New Year still rang on. It’s been on time ever since.
In 1999, for the special millennial, Waterford Crystal and Phillips Lighting got together and created the Millennial Ball, the largest crystal ball at the time, weighing over 1,000 pounds.
In 2007 it was the 100th anniversary of the ball drop, so the ball was updated with new technology of Phillips LED lights which could do millions of colors in lights.
In 2008 they built a new ball 12 feet in diameter, twice the size of the previous balls, still using the LED lights and technology, weighing over 6 tons (11.875 pounds) with 32,276 LED lights and is 30% more energy efficient than the one before, but 90% more efficient than the Halogen bulbs.
The ball now shines atop 1 Times Square year round, that also changes colors all the time.