The first-ever celebration of New Year’s Eve in Times Square was held in 1904. This inaugural bash commemorated the official opening of the new headquarters of The New York Times. The newspaper’s owner, German Jewish immigrant Alfred Ochs, had successfully lobbied the city to rename Longacre Square, the district surrounding his paper’s new home, in honor of the famous publication. The impressive Times Tower, marooned on a tiny triangle of land at the intersection of 7th Avenue, Broadway and 42nd Street, was at the time Manhattan’s second-tallest building—the tallest if measured from the bottom of its four massive sub-basements, built to handle the heavyweight demands of The Times‘ up-to-date printing equipment.
The building was the focus of an unprecedented New Year’s Eve celebration. Ochs spared no expense to ensure a party for the ages. An all-day street festival culminated in a fireworks display set off from the base of the tower, and at midnight the joyful sound of cheering, rattles and noisemakers from the over 200,000 attendees could be heard, it was said, from as far away as Croton-on-Hudson, thirty miles north along the Hudson River.
Today, New Year’s Eve in Times Square is an international phenomenon. Each year, hundreds of thousands of people still gather around the Tower, now known as One Times Square, and wait for hours in the cold of a New York winter for the famous Ball-lowering ceremony. Thanks to satellite technology, a worldwide audience estimated at over one billion people watches the ceremony each year. The lowering of the Ball has become the world’s symbolic welcome to the New Year. There are so many fun options in New York City for New Year’s Eve. From fine dining and rooftop bars to some of the best dance parties in the city. Check out this guide for some suggestions.
Limo Express offers convenient, affordable New Years Eve Packages for couples or groups up to 10 people. Call 800-221-2345 today to inquire about our rates and to make your reservation.