History and Tradition: The New Year’s Eve Ball Drop

The New Year’s Eve ball tradition dates back to 1907, when the first ball was dropped at Times Square in New York City. It was dropped from a flagpole at One Times Square, located at 42nd Street and Broadway.

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The event was organized by the owner of the New York Times newspaper, Adolph Ochs, to celebrate the new year and bring people together.

2000 New Year's Eve Ball
2000 New Year’s Eve Ball

The New Year’s Eve ball has undergone several changes over the years. In 1920, the ball was redesigned and made of iron and wood covered with a layer of white paper. In 1955, the ball was redesigned again, made of aluminum, and covered with light bulbs.

In the 1980s, the ball was redesigned once more and made of Waterford Crystal, a type of high-quality crystal known for its clarity and beauty. Waterford Crystal is made in the city of Waterford, Ireland, and has a long history of being used to create beautiful and elegant glassware and other decorative items. This crystal has been the material of choice ever since.

2009 New Year's Eve Ball
2009 New Year’s Eve Ball

The 2,688 Waterford Crystals are cut into triangles that vary in size, bolted to 672 LED modules on an aluminum frame, and illuminated by 32,256 LEDs. The ball can display 16 million vibrant colors and billions of patterns, creating a stunning visual display and making it visible from a distance.

The LED lights are arranged in patterns and can be programmed to display different colors and effects. The ball is typically about 12 feet in diameter and weighs about 11,875 pounds.

2010 New Year's Eve Ball
2010 New Year’s Eve Ball

The New Year’s Eve ball drop is an iconic tradition that millions worldwide watch. It symbolizes hope and renewal and is a way for people to come together and celebrate the start of a new year.

Video from 2022:

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