World welcomes 2017 with New Year's Eve fireworks, mourns deaths in 2016

World welcomes 2017 with New Year's Eve fireworks, mourns deaths in 2016


World welcomes 2017 with New Year's Eve fireworks, mourns deaths in 2016

Revelers around the world have been welcoming 2017 with crackling fireworks displays and loud cheering, saying goodbye to a year filled with political surprises, prolonged conflicts and the deaths of several beloved performers.

The people of Sydney were treated to a glittering display over their famed harbor and bridge that honored the singer David Bowie and actor Gene Wilder, who both passed away in 2016.

The display featured Saturn- and star-shaped fireworks set to “Space Oddity,” the classic song by Bowie, among the seemingly endless parade of beloved entertainers who died in 2016.

Wilder was honored as the bridge lit up in a rainbow of colors while a song from his film “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory” played.

The tone was more somber elsewhere, though, including Berlin, where some expressed worry about the political mood in Germany. It was also relatively quiet in China’s two largest cities, Beijing and Shanghai.

In New York City,  New Year’s Eve revelers, donning oversized 2017 eyeglasses and green Statue of Liberty hats, filled Times Square on Saturday hours before the glittering crystal ball was to drop.

Officials estimated as many as a million celebrants would descend upon the Crossroads of the World, braving cold temperatures and strong winds to ring in the New Year amid heavy police protection.

For more than two decades, security has gradually been tightened for the event. Recent deadly truck attacks in Germany and France brought about another security upgrade this year. Dozens of 20-ton sanitation trucks weighted with an extra 15 tons of sand are blocking off streets leading to the celebration zone.

This year, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has the honor of pushing the Waterford crystal button that begins a 60-second countdown to 2017.

Mariah Carey is the headline performer in Times Square for “Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest” on ABC. Other featured acts include pop-rock band DNCE, country star Thomas Rhett and Gloria Estefan and the cast of her Broadway musical, “On Your Feet!”

Celebrity deaths in 2016: Famous people we’ve said goodbye to this year (photos)

Source: Syracuse Post Standard
World welcomes 2017 with New Year's Eve fireworks, mourns deaths in 2016

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