Fox cancels Times Square New Year’s Eve event

National News

NEW YORK – Fox television network has announced it is canceling its “New Year’s Eve Toast & Roast 2022” production in New York. It is due to the increase of COVID-19 and the Omicron variant.

“While we are confident in the health and safety protocols for ‘Fox’s New Year’s Eve Toast & Roast 2022,’ the recent velocity of the spread of Omicron cases has made it impossible to produce a live special in Times Square that meets our standards,” Fox Entertainment said in a statement that was published by Variety. “We will not be moving forward with ‘Fox’s New Year’s Eve Toast & Roast 2022’ in New York.  The health and safety of our casts and crews has always been, and will continue to be, of the utmost importance.  Replacement programming for New Year’s Eve on Fox will be announced in the coming days.”

This is the first major television event scheduled for New Year’s Eve to be canceled due to Covid.

On Tuesday, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said he’s committed to keeping the city open as it deals with yet another spike in coronavirus cases. The Democratic mayor said that New York can’t see schools and businesses closed again like the city did in 2020 when COVID-19 first spread widely.

De Blasio will decide by Christmas whether the annual New Year’s Eve celebration in Times Square will continue as planned.

The event was small and socially distanced last year but de Blasio had hoped to hold it this year at “full strength.” That was before reports of COVID-19 cases ramped up again.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

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