7. The Ball’s 2,688 Crystals Are Cut with Special Designs

Times Square New Year's Eve BallGift of Happiness Design, Image Courtesy of Countdown Entertainment

Every year, 192 of the New Year’s Eve ball’s 2,688 triangular crystal panels are replaced. This is because each year, The House of Waterford Crystal creates a special design that symbolizes “a theme of global aspiration whose value is universally treasured.” The tradition began in 2014 and will continue into 2023. The first theme was the “Gift of Imagination,” which featured a design of intricate wedge cuts that created a kaleidoscope effect.

For 2021, the theme is the “Gift of Happiness.” The theme is represented by three sunburst cuts. “Gifts” from previous years included goodwill, wonder, kindness, fortitude, serenity, and harmony. All of those designs occupy 192 panels each, and the remaining 1,344 still bear the original Gift of Imagination design.