Huge signs of all shapes and sizes are plastered to the sides of buildings, on top of awnings, and on walls and construction sites everywhere. Glittering lights illuminate every surface; just like the city they are proud to be part of, they never cease to shine. It is the land of song and dance, playbills and matinees. The excitement bubbles through ticket holders as they anticipate seeing a Broadway show.
The swarms of people, adults and children alike, are filled with amazement. Every person wonders, at some point, how something could be so grand and fantastic and still be real. The buildings tower over their heads, and the billboards seem larger than life. There is a menagerie of stores, theaters and restaurants, but never enough time to visit them all. Everything imaginable exists on these streets: performers, artists, and a myriad of vendors selling everything from colorful paper kites to exquisite handmade jewelry.
The brilliant sounds of a soulfully played saxophone fill the air one second, and the next, a hip-hop song with a distinct beat is accompanied by the cheers of a crowd converged around a street dancer executing complicated moves. Nearby, awed customers watch a paintbrush glide over paper; a unique portrait comes into view. Then delicate brushstrokes beautifully form their names within a chosen border.
The notable sight of the New Year’s ball drop is a must-see. The big numbers indicating the new year sit peacefully at the base of the pole, waiting to be changed once more at next year’s celebration. Countless cameras capture sights and feelings that will be cherished long after the photographers return home, whether that is a few train stops away or as far as another country. The people are all so different, but they share one thing in common: the thrill of exploring the brilliance of Times Square.
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.