There are fireworks displays happening the world over to ring in 2020, and one of the best ones is also one of the last. San Francisco celebrates New Year’s Eve with a massive pyrotechnics display after most of the world is already asleep (or already celebrating New Year’s Day). The fireworks are launched from barges out in the bay, just south of the Ferry Building at Pier 14 and The Embarcadero.
The show lasts 15 minutes and is always synced to music that is broadcast along the waterfront via large speakers set up by the city. Local station KRON4 hosts a New Year’s Eve show with anchors Grant Lodes and Justin Waldman, which is embedded below. The fun starts with a remote report from Las Vegas at 8 p.m. PT, then it comes back to San Francisco as midnight nears.
If you live in the San Francisco area, this year officials are asking residents not to watch the fireworks from Treasure Island, which is a popular vantage point for the yearly pyrotechnics. IN a statement, the Treasure Island Development Authority tells KRON4 that ongoing construction has made viewing areas and parking extremely limited this year, so they are asking revelers to steer clear of Treasure Island altogether.
New Year’s Eve marks the end of a calendar year on the Gregorian calendar, the calendar first introduced in 1582 by Pope Gregory XIII, after whom it is named. Most countries celebrate the final day the year with parties, social gatherings, festivals, and/or fireworks. It goes by many names the world over, including Hogmanay in Scotland, Calennig in Wales, Baharu in Indonesia and Malaysia, Silvester in many European countries, Reveillon in France, Portugal, and Brazil, Kanun Novodgo Goda in Russia, and Omisoka in Japan.
Kiritimati, Tonga, and New Zealand are some of the first places to celebrate New Year’s Eve because they are located just west of the International Date Line, while the U.S.’ Baker Island is one of the last places to celebrate because it is just east of the International Date Line. Interestingly, because of the way the International Date Line jogs around a bit, Kiritimati is actually east of Baker Island.
In the United States, New Year’s is traditionally celebrated with parties and “drops,” the most famous of which is the ball drop held in New York City’s Times Square. But there are dozens of other “drops” held across the country, including a conch drop in Key West, Florida; a peach drop in Atlanta; an Indy car drop in Indianapolis; an acorn drop in Raleigh, North Carolina; a moon pie drop in Mobile, Alabama; a fleur-de-lis drop in New Orleans, a “Glowtato” drop in Boise, Idaho; and a tortilla chip drop in Tempe, Arizona, which is tied in to the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl game of college football.
New York also rings in the new year with a “Midnight Run” around Central Park that includes a fireworks show. Other fireworks displays around the country include shows at the Disney theme parks, the Las Vegas strip, and the Chicago “Chi-Town Rising” event.