The Pacific Wheel Will Count Down to 2021 in a Big Way

Keep your eye on the Santa Monica Pier attraction, which is saying “see ya” to 2020 with a dazzling light show.

  • Thursday, Dec. 31
  • A “Holiday Light Spectacular” will shine from sunset to 11:30 p.m.; a New Year’s show will glimmer from 11:30 p.m. to 11:59 p.m.; and a countdown is on from 11:59 p.m. to midnight
  • Free to watch on the Pacific Wheel’s webcam

The famous solar-powered Pacific Wheel, the fantastically large attraction that grandly holds colorful court near the ocean end of Santa Monica Pier, is lit by 174,000 LED lights.

If you were to begin counting down to the new year using that particularly ginormous number as your starting point, you’d need to commence your count over two days ahead of time.

It’s a good thing, then, that we don’t start counting down to the new year with 174,000 seconds to go. Rather, we launch our annual count at 10 seconds to midnight, or, if we’re feeling ambitious, a minute before the major moment arrives.

Still, the number “174,000” will play a role in welcoming 2021, at least for those at-home party people watching the Pacific Wheel’s webcam.

For the glittery and gargantuan attraction will welcome the new year in a big, show-stopping way on Thursday, Dec. 31, with shimmer, shine, and several holiday-style symbols.

The celebratory program gets going at sundown, with a general “Holiday Light Spectacular” playing on the sides of the nine-story wonder from 4:55 p.m. to 11:30.

Yes, there shall be a snowman among the images, and, indeed, he’ll be stupendously tall, if such notions fill you with festive joy.

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