McLaren engineers MTV's New Year's Eve 2011 Ball Drop

Snooki descends to Ring in 2011.

MTV commissioned McLaren to engineer the television network’s own version of the New Year’s midnight ball drop.

The production, which included a plastic and metal sphere that was lowered over 12 ft. from an elevated circular truss to the stage precisely at midnight, featured Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi, a notable member of MTV’s hit “Jersey Shore.” Snooki was contained inside the sphere as it descended.

The set included a 20 ft. diameter truss on four trussed tower legs. The towers were supported by trusses and beams tied together and ballasted on the show decks. The design had to utilize the show decks to spread the load to the supporting roof. As a result, all of the decks were designed to rest on rubber and plywood strips to protect the supporting roof, which were shimmed to level. The sphere was suspended by four cables rigged to a hoist at ground level.

Three days prior to New Year’s Eve, the show’s location was changed from a Manhattan rooftop to a lot in Seaside Heights, NJ adjacent to the Jersey Shore production site. Minor adjustments to the design were made, with a McLaren representative spending two days on site to ensure the final assembly was safe. MTV’s ball drop was ultimately a great success as well as an exciting spectacle.