Most hardened New Yorkers scoff on the thought of being trapped in a pen for hours with out a lavatory, standing shoulder to shoulder with strangers, to watch the ball drop in Times Square.
However there are some locals who’ve made it a tradition, saying it’s an experience you possibly can’t discover anyplace else.
Ronald Colbert came to his first New Year’s Eve ball drop in 1982 after leaving the U.S. Navy, the place he labored on submarines.
“I came that first year and it was magical,” he stated. He hasn’t missed one since.
Mr. Colbert, 65 years old, lives on Staten Island and works on the Staten Island Ferry. His co-workers assume he’s crazy for going, however he can’t think of any other place he would rather be on New Year’s Eve. On Wednesday, he was on the front of a barricade near West 44th Street, the place he met a couple from Australia. He wore the silver hat he bought in 1999.
“You have a million folks all focused on one small object,” he stated. “Their energy and their drive seems, to me, exciting.”
Linda Zhang, 17, of Sunset Park, Brooklyn, first came with pals in 2016 and decided she would return yearly.
“As a true New Yorker, it’s simply boring to stay home and watch it if you can be here,” she stated.
Revelers had to arrive early in the morning, some around 6 a.m., to fill up barricaded pens in Times Square. The New York City Police Department started closing down streets at 38th Street and Broadway, and moved north as folks arrived.
The Times Square Alliance estimates lots of of thousands of individuals will be present when the 11,875-pound ball, covered in 2,688 Waterford Crystal triangles, drops at midnight.
Times Square has long been a destination for vacationers from around the globe, some traveling to New York City only for the countdown.
However interspersed with the interlopers are a fair amount of natives, as well.
Anjali Abrahams, 24, lives in the Bronx and came for the first time this year with a friend from out of town.
“All of my friends were like, ‘are you serious?,’” Ms. Abrahams stated. “I low-key wished to see it. And now I’ve an excuse.”
The vibes to date have been great, and the entire thing was an experience, she stated. If she wasn’t in Times Square, she might be “somewhere in Brooklyn at someone’s party that I don’t want to be at.”
Victor Palomino of Mount Vernon, in Westchester County, came with his daughters, Kimberly, 13, and Coralie, 8, so they can see the K-Pop group BTS. They begged him to go. He relented after a couple of days.
“I stated, ‘you guys are crazy,’” Mr. Palomino, 50, stated. “And so am I.”
Kimberly, 13, stated she felt she had to go for all her mates whose parents wouldn’t allow them to. However she will be relieved when the clock strikes midnight.
“It means we’re gonna leave soon, and we’re gonna eat,” she stated.