New York Rings in the New Year with Green Flair

2009 sign

I spent the weekend before last in New York City acting the part of a tourist. Acting the part because when you are marrying into a family of New Yorkers (even if they don’t like IN the City), you always get to go to the City, but you never get to really see it. This trip, we actually got a chance to walk the streets and see the sights, including Times Square.

Being so close to the New Year, Times Square was abuzz with preparations for the biggest party of the year. As part of this celebration, extra toilets are of course required where millions of people will gather to watch the ball drop into 2009.  And, since it is Times Square, it seems only obvious that adding toilets means possibly the best advertising opportunity Charmin has ever thought up. Just off of the square at 1540 Broadway (next to Virgin Megastore) is a huge sign with your favorite Charmin bears welcoming visitors to excellent, eco-friendly toilets. With dancing twenty-somethings welcoming you to a potty experience of a lifetime, it was possibly the most fun place to make a restroom break in the country.

charmin bathroomOnce ushered into a super clean restroom, it doesn’t take long to notice that the toilets are ultra low-flow (1.1 gallons!) and low flow faucets with, of course, your choice of soft or strong toilet tissue. Its too bad that Charmin doesn’t offer a recycled toilet tissue product to coordinate with their otherwise eco-friendly restrooms.

So with all of that said and done (going to the bathroom that is!) we ventured to the upstairs section of this enormous infomercial which was entirely for Duracell Batteries.  Just as fun and engaging, this display included bikes which visitors could jump on and help generate the needed energy for the 2009 Times Square sign as well as toys powered by Duracell batteries (rechargeable of course!) and power stations for visitors to charge up cell phones.

In coordination with the green themed display, Duracell educated visitors about proper disposal of batteries and best of all, about the LED lit 2009 Times Square sign and the Ball. The 2009 sign will be lit with 40 watt Halogena Energy Saver bulbs which are 20% more energy efficient than the bulbs used in last year’s sign.

While we didn’t get to see the Times Square Ball up close, there were some amazing facts about this year’s ball. 


First off, it’s a whole new generation of lighting. It is double the size of last year’s ball and yet consumes only as much energy per hour as it takes to operate two household ovens! This state of the art ball still includes the Waterford crystal the ball has always been known for, but this year is lit by 32,256 Philips Luxeon LEDs, allowing for increased energy efficiency and color capabilities.

And, if you miss the lighting and dropping of the Times Square ball, fear not, it will be on display all year long this year. Drop by the Square next time you are in the City. But, if you plan to be there for the biggest party in the nation, take a photo for me and be sure to check out those Charmin restrooms… best potty in the area, guaranteed.

Tell us how you are ringing in the New Year in a green way below.

Happy New Year Everyone!

Charmin Bathroom image by Flickr user bluespf42 used under a Creative Commons License. Times Square Ball and 2009 Sign photos curtesy of Countdown Entertainment, LLC.
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One comment on “New York Rings in the New Year with Green Flair

  1. Sam X.
    January 1, 2009

    I didn’t see the ball drop! Very disappointed, am I the only one????

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This entry was posted on December 31, 2008 by in Dark Green, Green, Light Green, Medium Green and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , .

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