¡Tres! ¡Dos! ¡Uno! ¡Feliz Año Nuevo!
Ringing in the New Year will be a bit different for 2022 than ever before. For the first time, Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve production will include a countdown in Spanish from Puerto Rico. The annual New Year’s Eve TV special will be celebrating its 50th broadcast.
“As we expand the footprint of New Year’s Rockin’ Eve, we’re proud to broadcast from Puerto Rico as we showcase the vibrant multicultural destination to commemorate this milestone year for the iconic New Year’s celebration,” said MRC Live and Alternative president Adam Stotsky.
Host Ryan Seacrest will be live from the show’s home base in New York’s Times Square, where all the festivities will occur. In Puerto Rico, the celebration will happen at the Puerto Rico Convention Center and DISTRITO T-Mobile. The party will coincide with the 500th anniversary of the founding of San Juan, Puerto Rico’s capital city.
“We are very excited to host Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest 2022 on our island and to count on this high-caliber event to project the greatness of Puerto Rico and our people,” said Puerto Rico Governor Pedro Pierluisi. “This celebration not only allows Puerto Ricans to enjoy this great historic event, [but] it also speaks to diverse communities around the world that our Island is ready to receive tourism and foster economic development. New Year’s Rockin’ Eve will be a testament to all that Puerto Rico has to offer.”
While the network and government officials in Puerto Rico are celebrating this moment, some people point out the hypocrisy this decision bears given the U.S. territory will be using part of its $1.5 billion of federal rescue funds to host this event. Many on the island are still recovering from the impacts of Hurricane Maria that hit Puerto Rico in 2017. Additionally, in the years following the hurricane, frustration grew to fight for change, whether against poverty, LGBTQ+ rights, or government corruption. In 2019, an island-wide strike led to the resignation of Gov. Ricardo Rosselló and senior members of his government.
Pierluisi said the broadcast is set to attract 18.4 million viewers and benefit Puerto Rico’s tourism sector, which according to Bloomberg, represents about 6% of the island’s gross domestic product.