Going for a ride: De Blasio promotes tourism by spinning around Times Square Ferris wheel

Just call him the mayor of Fun City 2.0.

Mayor Bill de Blasio was spinning heads on Aug. 31 as he took to the sky riding the Times Square Ferris Wheel in order to help promote the Big Apple’s cultural comeback from the COVID-19 pandemic.

The 110-foot-tall Ferris Wheel has been rotating on Broadway and 48th Street since Aug. 25 and is being touted as an instrument through which to liven the heart of the New York once again with tourists and city dwellers alike. 

The mayor arrived with his son, Dante, on Tuesday afternoon to showcase the big wheel’s safety in hopes of enticing leagues of visitors to Times Square.

Mayor Bill de Blasio arrived with his son, Dante. Photo by Dean Moses

Grinning from ear to ear, de Blasio climbed aboard an empty carriage alongside Dante, New York City Council Member Keith Powers, and President of the Times Square Alliance Tom Harris, where they were swiftly whisked into the sky. Peering down at the city, the mayor gave a hearty wave to those far below.

“This is a really amazing feeling — you are floating above Times Square. It’s like I’ve never had an experience like this in my whole life. Times Square is the crossroads of the world, and you are up there just floating. It is amazing, it is worth it. Whether you are a visitor, or a New Yorker, come on down and experience this. It’s only for a limited time,” de Blasio said afterward.

The mayor climbs aboard. Photo by Dean Moses

Quick to point out that the Ferris wheel will only be available to ride through Sept. 12, de Blasio added that September will also see the return of Broadway shows.

“Times Square is coming back. You can see the energy. You can see the activity,” de Blasio said, pointing out the return of restaurants, retail businesses, and entertainment before continuing, “We know next month Broadway comes back and Times Square is going to be hoping again.”

Seeing the city from an new angle. Photo by Dean Moses

The mayor also continued to speak about the importance of vaccinations, which he credits for allowing the wheel to be erected in the first place.

“The key to our comeback has been vaccination. One of our best vaccination centers is right here at 20 Times Square,” de Blasio said, adding “This Ferris wheel is helping us with the vaccination drive.”

Mayor de Blasio, Times Square Alliance President Tom Harris, and NYC Council Member Keith Powers. Photo by Dean Moses