CNN says ‘the crowds are back’ for NYE even as COVID cases rise

CNN is ramping up to celebrate New Year’s Eve to bid farewell to yet another year most people probably would like to forget. 

Once again, CNN anchor Anderson Cooper and Bravo host Andy Cohen will host live from Times Square to welcome 2022.

The network is running promos that read “The crowds are back … and so are we,” interspersed with archival footage of past years’ broadcasts, as “Levitating” by Dua Lipa and featuring DaBaby plays.

The fullscreen graphics in the promo feature a bold, distinct serif in dark blue with gold accents in a geometric sans serif, which has similar typography but a “reversed” color scheme from last year’s. The pair’s first outing welcoming 2018 used a completely different, gold heavy art deco look.

Some have called out CNN’s emphasis on crowds in Times Square in the promo as coronavirus cases continue to rise across the country and New York City and how many of its own guests and commentators have been rallying against attending large events.

CNN ultimately doesn’t make the decision about crowds — that’s up to the Times Square Alliance and local officials, who are requiring all attendees to present valid photo ID and proof of vaccination to enter the cordoned off area.

Even before coronavirus, Times Square becomes a highly secure area on New Year’s Eve. Revelers aren’t allowed to leave their assigned area during the festivities and return — even to use the restroom or get food. 


During last year’s celebration, a limited crowd was allowed in Times Square consisting mostly of first responders as well as media and other invited guests.

While the city is welcoming the public this year, officials are still urging caution, especially if you are experiencing coronavirus symptoms or have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for it recently. 

To help welcome 2022, Don Lemon, Alisyn Camerota and comedian Dulce Sloan will take over at 12:30 a.m. eastern from New Orleans for midnight in the central time zone, with other correspondents joining from Key West, Florida, Puerto Rico, Las Vegas and others. 

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