Happy New Year! Did you know that the famous “dropping of the ball” on New Year’s Eve is a tradition that began in 1907? It’s true!
Here are some other fun facts:
- The original ball was made of wood and iron, and had over 100 incandescent light bulbs.
- The first ball weighed seven hundred pounds and was five feet in diameter.
- The ball begins to drop at 11:59 PM, and takes exactly 60 seconds to descend.
- When the ball drops, it slides down a specially made 141 foot flagpole.
- The celebration has been held every year since 1907, except for in 1942 and 1943, due to wartime blackouts.
- Since 2009, the ball has been left on display on top of One Times Square permanently, rather than being taken down yearly.
- The modern ball is lit by LED lights and is covered in a reflective material, much like a disco ball.
- Nearly a billion people, all over the world, watch the ball drop on TV or via internet streaming.