NYC’s New Year’s Eve celebration will go on despite virus surge; plus more virus updates

<p>Jonathan Bennett, host of Good Riddance Day, left, and Joe Papa, Director of Events, Times Square Alliance burn a 2021 banner at the official Good Riddance Day celebration in Times Square, Tuesday, Dec. 28, 2021, in New York. (AP Photo/Corey Sipkin)</p>

Corey Sipkin

Jonathan Bennett, host of Good Riddance Day, left, and Joe Papa, Director of Events, Times Square Alliance burn a 2021 banner at the official Good Riddance Day celebration in Times Square, Tuesday, Dec. 28, 2021, in New York. (AP Photo/Corey Sipkin)

NEW YORK (AP) — New York City will ring in 2022 in Times Square as planned despite record numbers of COVID-19 infections in the city and around the nation, Mayor Bill de Blasio said Thursday.

“We want to show that we’re moving forward, and we want to show the world that New York City is fighting our way through this,” de Blasio, whose last day in office is Friday, said on NBC’s “Today” show.

Keep scrolling for charts and graphs tracking the virus’ spread

After banning revelers from Times Square a year ago due to the pandemic, city officials previously announced plans for a scaled-back New Year’s bash with smaller crowds and vaccinations required.

While cities such as Atlanta have canceled New Year’s Eve celebrations, de Blasio said New York City’s high COVID-19 vaccination rate makes it feasible to welcome masked, socially distanced crowds to watch the ball drop in Times Square. “We’ve got to send a message to the world. New York City is open,” he said. Read the full story here:

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