Tribute in Light 2021: Manhattan skyline marks 20 years since 9/11

9/11: 20 years later

In this Wednesday, Sept. 11, 2013, file photo, the twin beams of the annual Tribute in Light commemorating the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks shine amid the city’s skyline, in New York. The twin beams of light representing the World Trade Center towers won’t be beamed into the sky during the 2020 memorial of the 9/11 terror attacks in New York City, because of concerns about the coronavirus and the health of work crews. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens, File)

LOWER MANHATTAN — The Tribute in Light has become an iconic part of the 9/11 remembrance.

First beginning six months following the terror attacks of Sept. 11, the twin light beams have become a part of the promise to “never forget” each and every year — adorning the sky from dusk to dawn.

The Tribute in Light is organized by the 9/11 Memorial and Museum. The twin beams reach four miles into the sky –  and are made up of 88 7,000-watt xenon lightbulbs positioned into two 48-foot squares. The beams are representative of the shape and orientation of the original Twin Towers.

The tradition returned on Saturday.

Watch the Tribute in Light here:

Preparation for Saturday

Ahead of Saturday’s return of tradition, PIX11 got a behind the scenes look at how it all comes together, with a trial run of sorts taking place Wednesday night.

The light installation is assembled on the roof of the Battery Parking Garage, just south of the 9/11 Memorial. Every flip of the switch is done manually to create two rays beaming into the night sky. It’s beauty honors the lives lost and symbolizes the strength of New York City.

Full coverage from PIX11 — 9/11: 20 Years Later

Wednesday evening, they put the finishing touches on the light installation that is a part of the events marking the somber remembrance of 9/11 each and every year. The rehearsal went off without a hitch.

Officials set to mark milestone

Earlier in the day, Gov. Kathy Hochul and former Mayor Michael Bloomberg visited the 9/11 Memorial together. The new governor praised Bloomberg for helping the city recover after 9/11.

“Thank you for joining us on a beautiful September morning, not unlike a glorious September morning 20 years ago this week,” said Hochul.  “I wanted to come to this site for reflection, to pay tribute to those lives we lost and to thank the first responders who survived.”

The pair laid a wreath to honor at the memorial.

Full coverage from PIX11 — 9/11: 20 Years Later

“The site behind me, we’re stewards of it,” said Bloomberg.  “We have to take care of it and we have an obligation, number one, to have a place for the families can grieve; number two, a place to educate our population as to what happened and how we can prevent that from happening again; and number three, as a center point for the rebirth of New York City.”

They illuminate the city, echoing the enduring spirit of New Yorkers and echoing the mantra Never Forget.

The Tribute in Light will be presented from dusk to dawn on the night of Sept. 11. It can be viewed from a 60 mile radius around Lower Manhattan.

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