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Reunion Tower in Dallas will host 'Over the Top' New Year's Eve show featuring fireworks and drones

Fireworks explode over the National Monument (Monas) in Jakarta, Indonesia.
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The show will use 225 drones and 10,000 pounds of fireworks.

The annual celebration in downtown Dallas is a free way to mark the New Year. It's an alternative for North Texans who want to enjoy fireworks, as DFW police and fire departments are warning against use of prohibited or illegal fireworks.

The sky will light up across downtown Dallas this New Year’s Eve.

Reunion Tower is hosting its sixth annual New Year's Eve event with a 360-degree panoramic fireworks show and the dropping of the ball to celebrate the new year.

Set-up for the show began on Tuesday, when 10,000 pounds of fireworks were unloaded at the tower.

“This year, we've brought a 225-drone show to add to the spectacle, and it's going to be pretty impressive,” said Gregg Elkin, Reunion Tower sales and communications director.

It takes months of planning for this one-night event.

“A lot of this work has all been done over the last about three months — from a storyboard idea, to what the animations are, to what we're going to put up there,” Elkin said.

The tower is working with Dallas-based drone company, Sky Elements, which is one of five companies in the country that has a permit to conduct these sorts of shows.

“They were able to come out around Halloween and got to do a holiday show just as a test. Actually, very early 2:30 Wednesday morning, we did some tests and everything was smooth,” Elkin added.

The Dallas police and fire departments have worked with the tower on the annual fireworks show for the last six years. Elkin says that means they can learn from every show to make it safer for audiences as the years go on.

Police departments in Dallas, Fort Worth and Arlington have asked the public to refrain from using prohibited and illegal firework activities, so watching the show at Reunion Tower would be a viable alternative.

White House chief medical adviser Anthony Fauci has urged the public to “stay away” from large New Year’s Eve gatherings. Reunion Tower strongly recommends all staff and visitors wear masks while on its observation deck, including on New Year's Eve.

“We see ourselves as a cheerleader for the city throughout no matter what's going on, and we've been that way since COVID started,” Elkin said. “So as people look ahead to 2022 and hopefully, we can turn the corner and try to put some of this behind us.”

For those looking to visit the observation deck on Dec. 31, it will be open until 10 p.m. Otherwise, the show can be seen from all around downtown Dallas and via livestream on the tower’s Facebook page.

Got a tip? Email Haya Panjwani at hpanjwani@kera.org. Follow Haya on Twitter @hayapanjw

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Haya Panjwani is a general assignment reporter for KUT. She also served as a legislative fellow for The Texas Newsroom during the 2021 legislative session.