The iconic Times Square New Year’s Eve celebration has been impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. Despite being a few months away, Times Square Alliance President Tim Tompkins revealed the celebration would turn virtual with no large crowds gathering in New York City’s epicenter.
While the mass crowds will not be there, event organizers will be inviting small groups of individuals and honorees to the event.
“One thing that will never change is the ticking of time and the arrival of a New Year at midnight on December 31st,” said Tompkins, via FOX News. “But this year there will be significantly new and enhanced virtual, visual and digital offerings to complement whatever limited live entertainment or experiences – still in development – will take place in Times Square.
“Because more than ever in these divided and fear-filled times, the world desperately needs to come together symbolically and virtually to celebrate the people and things we love and to look forward with a sense of renewal and new beginnings.”
Among the honorees will be essential workers, first responders, doctors, scientists, and upcoming entertainers.
The coronavirus mainly comes from animals and a majority of those who were infected early either worked at or frequently visited the Huanan seafood wholesale market in Wuhan, according to The Guardian. The virus is similar to Severe acute respiratory syndrome (Sars) and Middle Eastern respiratory syndrome (Mers).
The Wuhan coronavirus is transmitted from person to person through “droplet transmission.” That means an infected person can pass the virus by sneezing or coughing on another person as well as by direct contact.
While a majority of the cases have been detected in the United States and China — with more than 6.92 million confirmed cases and 201,000 deaths in the United States — it has now reached many countries around the world. It has also been confirmed in Italy, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, and many other eastern countries.