Secrets of classic NYC: Times Square

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  • Photograph: Lindsay M Taylor

  • Photograph: Lindsay M Taylor

  • Photograph: Lindsay M Taylor

  • Photograph: Lindsay M Taylor

Photograph: Lindsay M Taylor

The New York Times' headquarters was situated at the intersection of Broadway and 42nd Street from the end of 1904 through 1913. Not only did the newspaper give the area its name, but it also created Times Square's most popular event. When the Gray Lady moved into One Times Square on December 31, 1904, the paper threw an all-day party with a fireworks finale to celebrate the occasion. The spectacle was so legendary that New Yorkers quickly stopped celebrating New Year's Eve at Trinity Church in favor of the new spot. A new tradition started three years later, when a 700-pound sphere made from wood and iron was lowered at midnight to ring in 1908. The light display from the countdown and ball-drop is simulated every 20 minutes year-round at the Times Square Visitor Center, where you can see 2007's Centennial Ball—an 11,875-pound geodesic globe made from Waterford crystal and more than 32,000 LEDs. Times Square Visitor Center, 1560 Broadway between 46th and 47th Sts (212-484-1222, timessquarenyc.org)

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