Anyone can host a ball drop on New Year Eve’s (looking at you Times Square in New York City), but only in the South can you find an acorn, a pelican and other significant-to-the- destination objects ascending to or descending from their perch to welcome in the new year.
- Why have a plain ball, when you can have a beach ball? New Year’s Eve Beach Ball Drop at Pier Park in Panama City Beach, Fla., not only includes an 800-pound LED lighted beach ball, but also 10,000 inflated beach balls as well. The inflated ones are released at 8 p.m., making the experience perfect for families (and others) who want to call it an early night.
- Wetumpka, Ala.’s annual meteor drop honors an event that took place in the area millions of years ago. In addition to the drop, the community event features live entertainment and fireworks.
- The Peach Drop in Atlanta is considered to be the southeast’s largest New Year’s Eve celebration. Taking place at Underground Atlanta, it's non-stop fun for 16-hours. Also in Georgia, Tallapoosa lowers “Spencer,” a stuffed possum from atop of one of the city’s oldest buildings; McDonough hosts the 4th annual Geranium Drop; it’s the second year for the both the Dropping of the Edelweiss in Helen and the Perry Buzzard Drop, respectively; the Cherry Drop in Macon not only signifies the new year, but also serves as the start of the official countdown to the Cherry Blossom Festival (March 19 - April 4, 2015); ’tis good luck with the lit shamrock descending from atop the historic Fred Roberts Building in downtown Dublin; a six-foot to-go cup is raised to toast the new year in Savannah.
- Even when it comes to New Year’s Eve drops, food plays a dominant role here in the South. In addition to the Peach Drop, there is the Moon Pie drop in Mobile, Ala., featuring a 600-pound electric pie, and may also be the only drop that has a song written about it; “Big Orange,” a 35-foot neon cool-looking, smiling orange rises up the side of the InterContinental Hotel in Miami; a lit pineapple represents Sarasota, Fla.’s celebration; with the nickname “the City of Oaks,” it makes sense that an acorn is lowered in Raleigh, N.C.; home to Mt. Olive Pickle Company, Mount Olive, N.C., lowers a lighted 3-foot pickle down a 45-foot flagpole. Instead of midnight Eastern Standard time, the event take places at 7 p.m. EST, which is midnight Greenwich Mean Time.
- The Pensacola Pelican Drop in Pensacola, Fla., features a 14-foot, half-ton illuminated pelican, with a 20-foot wingspan. The pelican made its debut during the 2008 New Year’s Eve celebration to usher in 2009.
- New Orleans welcomes in the new year with an eight-foot tall fleur de lis drop, from the top of the Jax Brewery Company. Over in Baton Rouge, it is the second year for the Red Stick Revelry, in which a nine-foot Led lit red stick is dropped.
- The Wharf in Orange Beach, Ala., “reels” in the new year with their marlin drop. Prior to the event, there is a street party and other activities.
- In addition to the acorn in Raleigh and the pickle in Mt. Olive, North Carolina is also home to the flea drop featuring "Jasper the Flea" in Eastover, the crown drop in the Queen City of Charlotte and a possum-related drop at Clay’s Corner in Brasstown, N.C.
photo credits: MoonPie Drop, courtesy of Resort Collection on the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail; Perry Buzzard Drop, courtesy of Georgia Tourism
- The drops in Tennessee pays homage to its music heritage. The Music Note Drop in Nashville has a 15-foot tall red music note adorned with over 150 feet of LED lights. In Memphis, the new year is welcomed in with the Hard Rock Cafe Guitar Drop.