Waterford Crystal: The Gift of Fortitude
As we finally begin to prepare ourselves to conclude yet another calendar year, one company has been readying themselves to ring in 2015 all year long: Waterford Crystal. The Irish crystal manufacturing company has been the designated design company of the Time Squares New Year’s Eve Ball since the new millennium.
When Rudy Giuliani announced the company taking over in the early 2000s, Waterford Crystal became known for setting themes to each year’s Ball design. Each year, the crystal paneling would change to incorporate the theme’s concept; for example, the 2002 celebration’s theme was “Hope” and the crystal panels honored the victims of the September 11th attacks by inscribing then with their names. Beginning in 2008, the company launched another theme for the Ball called the “World of Celebration,” which ended in 2013.
Last year was the first year of Waterford Crystal’s newest campaign series called the “Greatest Gifts.” During the next decade, the company will continuously redesign panels to match each year’s theme. In 2014, the theme was “Gift of Imagination” and Waterford Crystal released the 2015 theme on their Facebook on December 19, which will celebrate the “Gift of Fortitude.”
Tom Brennan, the master artisan at Waterford Crystal, spoke with Forbes about his latest endeavor with designing the 2015 crystal panels. He told the magazine, “It’s hard work, but it’s great fun. We want to make sure we refresh over the previous year. It moves very quickly and we never stop.”
Since taking over as the creative design of the Ball, Waterford Crystal has redesigned the iconic New Year’s Eve emblem three times. The current Ball used during the New York celebration is made up of 32,256 LED lamps; 2,688 crystal panels; weighs 11,875 pounds; and is 12 feet in diameter.
All of the crystal panels were replaced in 2014 to incorporate the “Greatest Gift” themes. This year, Waterford Crystal replaced 288 panels, which will reflect the “Gift of Fortitude” theme and the rest of the panels will remain with the “Gift of Imagination” design. The company will continue to replace the crystal panels to match each year’s theme—and in the year 2023, there will be 10 different panel designs on the New Year’s Eve Ball.
This year, Waterford Crystal awarded and honored the International Rescue Committee with the Award of Fortitude because of their relentless dedication to helping those in need around the globe. The non-for-profit organization strives to raise money and bring awareness to refugees around the globe who were affected by war. Their current campaign, which ends tonight at midnight, aims to raise $3.3 million for those refugees. The organization matched the first $1.2 million raised, and is now only thousands away from raising their ultimate goal.
To donate to the International Rescue Committee, please click here.
Featured Image by Philips via Times Square Ball Facebook; Times Square Image Courtesy of Countdown Entertainment; Waterford Crystal Panel Image: Waterford Crystal Facebook via Times Square Ball Facebook; Award of Fortitude Image: Waterford Crystal Facebook via Times Square Ball Facebook.