New York City Scaling Back Times Square New Year’s Eve Celebration

New York City announced it is scaling back its annual New Year’s Eve celebration in Times Square. Mayor Bill De Blasio said that the number of attendees will be capped at 15,000, compared to the 58,000 people who usually crowd the streets to watch the ball drop from the top of One Times Square.

In addition, attendees will have to prove they are fully vaccinated and will be required to wear masks at the outdoor event. Visitors will not be allowed to enter the viewing areas until 3 p.m., which is much later than in previous years.

“The health and safety of every guest is the priority of Times Square New Year’s Eve 2022,” de Blasio said in a news release.

Officials said that they are continuing to monitor the growing number of COVID cases due to the Omicron variant and could put more restrictions in place before next week.

Mayor-elect Eric Adams, who takes office on January 1, said he supports de Blasio’s decision.

“New Yorkers and visitors alike can now enjoy Times Square and the rest of our city as we ring in 2022,” Adams said.

Last year, New York City canceled the annual event and instead hosted a virtual ball drop.

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