Happy New Year, 2017 – Wishes for Peace and Happiness



Happy New Year, 2017! Do you have your new list of resolutions? Suffering from your hangover have you decided to stop drinking in the new year? Or, perhaps, after you have your waffles, covered with delicious syrup for breakfast, you have decided to go on your diet. Maybe you are out walking, decide to return home after walking one block, after you have set your goal to walk five miles each day.

A Happy New Year is celebrated differently in all parts of the world. In Germany spectacular fireworks in Cologne and Berlin were watched by tens of thousands of revelers among tight security. Russia celebrated with a major gift-giving holiday while larger cities were dressed in festive lights and decorations. President Vladimir Putin offered a seasonal message, “Each of us may become something of a magician on the night of the New Year.”

South Korea used the evening as a political rally. Crowds gathered in Seoul to demand the removal of their impeached President Park Geun-hye. The protests resulted in being the largest in the country’s history. Sao Paolo, Brazil started the festivities with its annual 15-kilometre St Silvester road race which started in 1925. A new record was set by Kenya’s Jemima Sumgong. The runner also won a marathon gold at the Olympic Games in Rio earlier in the year. Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia lit the skies with amazing fireworks beside the landmark Petronas Twin Towers. Hong Kong celebrated in a similar way with fireworks lighting the city’s skyline. India celebrates more with family events on New Year’s. However, there are many lavish parties at upscale hotels and restaurants. The big draws at the hotel parties are song and dance performances from Bollywood and television stars.

As the Big Ben tower chimed at midnight, the raucous New Year celebrations started in London. Participants had the opportunity to watch the breath-taking fireworks display over the River Thames.

Happy new year celebrations took place all over the United States. New York saw thousands of people cram into Times Square to watch the famous glittering crystal ball drop. It has been customary, through the years, that a number of other cities and towns, in the U.S., hold their own versions of the ball drop. A variety of objects are lowered or raised during the last minute of the year. Honolulu, Hawaii once again saw celebrants wearing summer clothing to watch the fireworks burst over Waikiki Beach and the Aloha Tower Marketplace. Many people headed to the beach in the early hours hoping to cure their hangover. Los Angeles, California saw mammoth street parties to black tie affairs with a celebration for every taste and budget. Chicago, Illinois offered a load of things to do including dinner, parties, firework cruises and family friendly events.

Unfortunately it wasn’t such a happy new year as the celebrations turned violent in Turkey. An attacker opened fire on New Year’s participants at a nightclub in Istanbul. The murderer killed at least 35 people and wounded another 40. The city’s governor, Vasip Sahin, said the attach was carried out by one person and was a terror attack.


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