10…9…8… It’s almost time to say good-bye to 2018 and kick off 2019! The ball is dropping in Times Square in New York City. Here’s how to watch the New Year’s Eve tradition online for free!
Grab a glass of something bubbly and a sweetheart to kiss, because it’s New Year’s Eve! 2018 is so last year, and with 2019 practically here, all that’s left is to count down the final seconds of this year! The biggest countdown is happening in Manhattan, as over a million people will brave the rain and balmy temperatures to watch the ball drop in Times Square. For those who’d rather stay at home (or couldn’t afford a ticket to New York City this year) you’re in luck! The city will stream the ball drop LIVE on its official website, and you can watch it here – FOR FREE!
Millions in NYC (and the millions watching at home) will count down as the world-famous ball is lowered in Times Square. This year, the ball (a geodesic sphere that’s 12 feet in diameter and weighs 11,875 pounds, per the Times Square website) is covered with a total of 2,688 Waterford Crystal triangles. The ball has 672 LED modules, which contains 32,256 LEDs. “The Ball is capable of displaying a palette of more than 16 million vibrant colors and billions of patterns that creates a spectacular kaleidoscope effect atop One Times Square.”
Last year, Tarana Burke, the civil rights activist who founded the Me Too movement, pressed the button to kick of the ball drop. This year, several prominent journalists will gather on stage “with the Committee to Protect Journalists just before midnight to push the crystal button that signals the lowering of the Waterford Crystal Times Square New Year’s Eve Ball,” the Times Square Alliance and Countdown Entertainment said in a press release. Washington Post global opinions editor Karen Attiah, who worked with slain journalist Jamal Khashoggi, New York Times deputy managing editor Rebecca Blumenstein, CNN’s Alisyn Camerota, CBS’ Vladimir Duthiers, Time Magazine CEO Edward Felsenthal and others will stand in a statement of the power of a free press (and a rebuke to any thin-skinned president who might tweet out something about “fake news.)
“The group of journalists who will join us on stage to inaugurate the countdown to 2019 are highly distinguished,” Committee to Protect Journalists Executive Director Joel Simon said, per HuffPost. “They are also representatives of all journalists in the United States, and around the world who work hard every day to keep their communities informed and hold the powerful to account. It’s the freedom to do this critical work that we celebrate.”
Happy New Year!