Revelers in Times Square must be fully vaccinated for New Year's Eve ball drop

Coronavirus update for NYC

ByEyewitness News WABC logo
Wednesday, November 17, 2021
Revelers in Times Square must be fully vaccinated for NYE ball drop
CeFaan Kim has more information on the 2022 New Year's Eve Time Square celebration.

NEW YORK CITY (WABC) -- Mayor Bill de Blasio, along with the Times Square Alliance, announced new details about this year's New Year's Eve celebration and ball drop.

New Yorkers will get to party like it's 2019 this New Year's Eve, as revelers can once again pour into Times Square to ring in 2022.

Public gatherings are allowed once again at the Crossroads of the World, but attendees will need to follow a few precautions to celebrate.

Revelers ages 5 and up must be fully vaccinated. Revelers must also bring proof of vaccination and a valid ID cards.

Hundreds of thousands of people are expected to attend this year's ball drop.

Mayor de Blasio called it, "further evidence to the world that we are 100% back."

Mayor Bill de Blasio, along with the Times Square Alliance, announced the COVID rules in place for the New Year's Eve ball drop.

Tom Harris, the President of the Times Square Alliance, said those who are under age 5 must be accompanied by a fully vaccinated adult. Also, those unable to be vaccinated due to medical reasons will be required to show a negative PCR test taken within 72 hours of the event.

Also, masks will be required.

Last New Year's Eve, Times Square stood hauntingly empty as revelers were told to stay away. Only a few first responders and medical heroes were allowed to watch from socially distant pens.

"It was me, some cops, and an empty pen of press people, it was an interesting feeling, not one we want to see again," said NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea.

Tourists and merchants alike said they were thrilled by the news on Monday.

The iconic Ellen's Stardust Diner opened on Tuesday after the pandemic shut it down and staff is bursting with optimism about what tomorrow holds.

"It's the most exciting day that I've had in a year," owner Ellen Hart said. "The office buildings are not as filled as they were before. But I see it coming back, I see a big change."

Harris said the pedestrian count in Times Square is up more than 50% over the last few months. He said last Saturday there were over 270,000 people who visited Times Square.

ALSO READ | NYC sees uptick in COVID-19 cases as weather turns colder, easing access to booster shots

Kemberly Richardson reports on COVID vaccinations and booster shots from the Upper East Side.
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