It was a cold start to 2009, but it was worth it for the reported hundreds of thousands that flocked to Times Square to ring in the new year. The temperature was about 0 degrees, when counting the wind chill, and the revelers made the best of it. One told NY1, "I just feel like it's something you have to do once in your life," and another added, "I mean, growing up as a kid you always got to watch the ball drop, right? So I'm like, why not do it in real life?"
Many arrived as early at 8.am.; one teen who came all the way from Venezula told the Post, "I came here for the Jonas Brothers and the show... I'm wearing tights under my jeans, Ugg boots, extra underwear, anything I can - and I'm still freezing." And, like in years past, there was a corporate presence amongst the crowd: Nivea, a sponsor for the celebration, handed out balloons for celebrants to wave and hats for them to wear (not to mention samples of its lip balm for the midnight kiss), while Pepsi, another sponsor, gave out scarves and dropped a 1,000 balloons with its messages of "optimism" (and its new logo) a few minutes before midnight.
Mayor Bloomberg, Secretary of State-designate (and Senator) Hillary Clinton and former President Bill Clinton pressed the button that started the New Year's Ball's descent, and right after the countdown hit 1 second, cheers rang out, confetti fell and swirled around, and the sound of Frank Sinatra signing "New York, New York" was played on speakers.
This morning, the Mayor was back in Times Square to thank the Department of Sanitation crews cleaning up: Last year, there were 40 tons of garbage! Oh, and Bloomberg told NY1 what his resolutions are: "I always have the same three New Years resolutions, which typically last a day - improve my golf game, improve my Spanish and reduce my waistline."