Video above: New York’s Times Square Empty on New Year’s Eve
New York City will once again welcome thousands of people to Times Square for the famed New Year's Eve ball drop tradition, so long as they show proof of vaccination against COVID-19, officials said Tuesday.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced the return of a "big, strong, full strength" in-person 2022 New Year's Eve celebration in Times Square this year following its virtual event last year due to pandemic concerns.
"We want to welcome those hundreds of thousands of folks — but everyone needs to be vaccinated," the mayor cautioned. "All you need to do is have proof of vaccination and a valid photo ID and you are in."
The mayor said he's been working with the NYC Department of Health, the NYPD and other partners in preparation for the NYE festivities.
"Join the crowd, join the joy, join a historic moment as NYC provides further evidence to the world that we are 100% back," de Blasio said.
The head of the Times Square Alliance, Tom Harris, joined the press conference to celebrate the return of the in-person celebration, saying that all attendees five years and older will have to show proof of vaccination.
Harris said that those attending with disabilities who cannot be vaccinated must show proof of negative PCR test within 72 hours.
He added that children under five must be accompanied by a vaccinated adult and all individuals who are unable to be vaccinated must wear a mask.