Friday, December 10, 2021

Austin's New Year: Fireworks from Afar


Be Dazzled from a Distance

This year, the City of Austin will welcome in the New Year with a festive fireworks show. The City of Austin prioritizes safety during events and, for this New Year’s Eve, we will be exercising an abundance of caution to help prevent post-holiday surges. City-organized activities, vendors, and entertainment will not be present in the park. Austinites and visitors are encouraged to celebrate responsibly and watch from afar.   

“In years past, Austin’s New Year has been a family-friendly event with entertainment and activities for kids of all ages. With the vaccine only recently becoming available for children, we are choosing to remain diligent in our efforts to minimize the spread of COVID, while also wishing everyone lots of light and hope for 2022,” said City Manager Spencer Cronk. “Many local events and venues are offering opportunities to ring in the New Year. We encourage everyone to celebrate safely and enjoy the fireworks show from a safe distance,” he continued. 

COVID-19 cases are on the rise again as new variants, including omicron, emerge in the area. Hospitals within the state are also filling up with COVID-19 patients again. While Austin is currently in Stage 3 of the COVID-19 Risk Based Guidelines, public health officials are increasingly concerned that the Community Transmission Rate (CTR) is now showing “substantial” rates of virus spread. Learning from the latest surge, a moderate or substantial CTR is considered an early warning sign to increase protection measures to help prevent a surge. Austin Public Health continues to stress the importance of getting tested, vaccinated and boosted, particularly during the holiday season when people want to gather. Additionally, especially indoors in public, Austinites are encouraged to practice social distancing and wear masks.   

The fireworks display will begin December 31, 2021 at 10:00 p.m. at Vic Mathias Shores (700 W. Riverside Dr., Austin, Texas 78704). We encourage everyone to watch from a safe distance. 

How to Watch the Show 
Watch from the comfort of your living room. Tune in at 10:00 p.m. to watch the show streamed live from ATXN on-line or on cable television: 

  • On-line:
  • Spectrum Cable: Channel 6 
  • Grande Communications: Channel 6  
  • AT&T U-Verse: Channel 99 

Road Closures for Firework Fall Out Zones  
Road closures associated with firework fall out zone safety start at 8 p.m. and may precede actual event start times. Only fireworks related staff are permitted in the area. See the street closure map. All streets will be reopened no later than midnight. 

8:00 p.m. 

  • Riverside Drive from Lee Barton to S. 1st Street full closure by 8:00 p.m. 

9:00 p.m.   

  • 1st St Bridge - starting at 9:00 p.m. with full bridge closure by 9:30 p.m. 

Lake Closures 
For safety reasons, Lady Bird Lake between the railroad trestle bridge and the S. 1st St. bridge will be closed from 9 p.m. to midnight. 

Austin Police Department 
The Austin Police Department is focused on saving lives in the Austin metropolitan area and making the roadways safe for everyone through education and enforcement. APD’s No-Refusal DWI Initiative is effective Thursday, December 16 through Friday, December 31, from 10 p.m. – 5 a.m. daily. Have a plan to get home safely. Don’t drink and drive. 

Austin Fire Department  
The Austin Fire Department reminds you that it is illegal to possess, use, or sell fireworks within the City of Austin. Call 3-1-1 to report illegal fireworks.  

Austin Public Health  
Austin Public Health recommends attendees mask up if unvaccinated or immunocompromised, especially in crowded areas, to prevent the spread of COVID-19.  

About Austin Center for Events
The Austin Center for Events (ACE) is a collaborative assembly of City of Austin departments and agencies designed to streamline special event permitting on public and private property. ACE is anchored by teams from Austin Public Health, Transportation, Parks, Music, Police, Fire, EMS, Code, Austin Resource Recovery, Development Services, and partner agencies. ACE works closely with event organizers to guide them through the special event permitting process.

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