New Years Eve Times Square 2014 Update: 1 Billion Expected to Watch as Sonia Sotomayor Lowers Ball
Tourists and New Yorkers are preparing for the 2013 Times Square New Year's Eve bash, but that massive, epic party does not just fall out of the sky like the world famous New Year's Eve Ball. Instead, hundreds of people are setting-up the biggest party of the year while a judge and pedal pushers prepare to help the New Year's Eve Ball drop.
Almost 800 people are currently working on Times Square's New Year's Eve party.
"We have to blow up the balloons that we hand out to people," Tim Tompkins, Times Square Alliance President, told WCBS. "We have to sort of stuff our little goody bags, and there's still some build-out to be done on the main stages where people perform."
Balloons and goody bags make Times Square festive, but the center of the party is the New Year's Eve Ball.
"We've just installed all of the 2,688 Waterford crystal triangles with a new pattern," Jeff Strauss, Countdown Entertainment President, said. "One of the triangles is actually imagined by a young girl, a 12-year-old girl, at St. Jude's Research Hospital, and this was her design, which is a rose, and her message of hope, and beauty and positiveness for the New Year."
A U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice now has less than 24 hours to prep her button-pressing finger for the big event. Yesterday, Times Square Alliance announced that Bronx native Sonia Sotomayor will press the button that sends the sparkly ball down its 60-second-long descent into 2014.
"Justice Sotomayor is an inspiration to many, and it is a privilege to welcome her to our celebration to ring in 2014," Tompkins said in a statement. "Who better to join us in the Crossroads of the World than one of New York's own?"
Over 1 million revelers will watch Sotomayor's work from Times Square, and 1 billion worldwide will enjoy the show from television.
Sotomayor is not the only who has some physical preparation to do.
Since Saturday, six Citi Bikes were hooked up to 12-volt deep cycle batteries so that volunteer riders could pedal around the city and generate the power needed to operate the New Year's Eve Ball.
"With the year's biggest party being powered by Citi Bike pedals, the world is in for an even more electrifying experience when the ball drops," Janette Sadik-Khan, Transportation Commissioner, said in a statement.
The bikes generate an average of 75 watts per hour, which will help more than 30,000 New Year's Eve Ball LEDs light up Times Square's sky. The Citi Bike Pedal Power Station is available today until 8 p.m.