By Olivia Canter
Just a few weeks into the New Year, people have gathered with friends and family to reflect on the previous year and set goals for the year ahead. In fact, this tradition dates back to 45 B.C., when the Julian calendar was first put into effect.
And so too, the most-watched New Year’s Eve special, the ball drop, has been around for many years. People started celebrating New Year’s Eve in Times Square in 1904; however, in 1907, the New Year’s Eve ball was first dropped from a flagpole, leaving the crowds in awe. This first ball was made of iron and wood, and it was 5 feet in diameter and 700 pounds! Ever since, a large ball has been dropped in Times Square, streamed on television all throughout the world. This year, the ball was a geodesic sphere that was 12 feet in diameter and 11,875 pounds.
Byram’s students comment on their excitement for the annual ball drop. Sophomore Lizzie Manowitz explains, “It’s always exciting to watch the ball drop as you enter the new year!” Additionally, Anika Kumar, a sophomore, states, “It’s a fun tradition to yell the countdown with all your family and friends.” The ball drop not only brings people together to celebrate, but it is a symbol of a fresh start and an exciting future!
Many people view the New Year as a way to better themselves and create resolutions. Mrs. Croke, who specializes in Physical Education and students’ well-being, explained the importance of resolutions: “It gives you a fresh start to the year, and it is more about goal-setting than anything else. In fact, it is easy because most people work off of January 1st as the start of their year.” Benchmarks often give us the motivation to start something new, and the beginning of the year is a perfect time! John Davanzo, a sophomore, agrees and says, “It is a time where people are working towards being a better version of themselves.”
Students also believe that it is important to create goals, as attaining these goals help people improve themselves. Sophomore Talia Dinstein explains that resolutions “help [individuals] set goals…to be a better person and improve in the new year.” Individuals may also view the New Year as a “do-over.” Ariel Sheinberg expands upon this “do-over,” and explains, “You get a new start. If you had a rough year, you can start all over again and make a new year for yourself.” Often times, people can use the New Year as a great way to gain the strength to overcome any obstacles they struggled with in the previous year.
Although looking ahead towards the New Year is great, Sophomore Skylar Silverstein also explains, “New Year’s resolutions are important because it makes you reflect on the past year and think about what you want to do better next year.” Oftentimes, on New Year’s Day, we look forward to the future, which is a great quality; however, Skylar brings up a great point about reflection. Reflecting on the past year, whether it be accomplishments or mistakes, can bring closure. It is important to acknowledge what has shaped your character and commend yourself for any adversities you overcame or accomplishments you achieved.
Pertaining to specific resolutions, Senior Emma Freund shares, “My New Year’s resolution is to try to treat myself better and go to the gym more because I find excuses not to, but there is no excuse not to take care of myself.” Physical health is super important, and eating healthily and incorporating exercise into your daily routine is a fabulous resolution! Skylar Silverstein also shares her resolution, which is “to be happy.” Though easier said than done, recognizing what we need to work on or what we would like to improve is a step in the right direction!
The New Year is a joyous time to celebrate the previous and upcoming years and gives us the opportunity to create resolutions to better ourselves. So, what is your New Year’s resolution?