WASHINGTON, DC (WUSA) --- The District's iconic cathedral will ring in 2012 with bell chimes at midnight.
The tolling of the bells is a tradition spanning centuries.
The Washington National Cathedral began the tradition after the bells' installation in 1964.
Volunteer ringers will start a half-muffled quarter peal at 10:30 p.m. on New Year's Eve and end at 11:30 p.m. At midnight, the bells will ring for half an hour to welcome the new year.
On New Year's Day, following the 11:15 a.m. Eucharist service, the Washington Ringing Society will attempt a full peal lasting approximately three and a half hours, according to the Cathedral's communications office.
"The start the New Year echoes the message of Christmas. That hope, peace, and goodwill be with all people," said the Rev. Canon Jan Naylor Cope, Cathedral vicar.
"The volunteer change ringers practice a special ministry of ringing out this message of goodwill to the city of Washington, the nation, and the world on behalf of the spiritual home for the nation."
Written by: Elizabeth Jia
9NEWS NOW & WUSA9.com