From one-of-a-kind drops like the MoonPie Drop
in Mobile, Ala., to celebrations such as the New Year's Eve Celebrate Twice
in Port St. Joe and Mexico Beach, Fla., and more, the South offers many memorable ways to welcome in 2016.
Last Night Fayetteville (Ark.) culminates with the Hog Drop
. Countdown to 2016 as a decorated "hog" is raised 100 feet and then slowly lowered the ground.
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. 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 hours. However, that's not the only drop in Georgia. Tallapoosa lowers “Spencer,” a stuffed possum
from atop of one of the city’s oldest buildings while McDonough hosts the 5th annual Geranium Drop
. In Helen, there's the Dropping of the Edelweiss
. In Perry, you can ring in 2016 with the Perry Buzzard Drop
. 'Tis good luck with the lit shamrock
descending from atop the historic Fred Roberts Building in downtown Dublin; and in Savannah, a six-foot to-go cup
is raised to toast the start of a new year.
It's a known fact that food plays an important role in the South, even with New Year's Eve drops. The MoonPie Drop
in Mobile, Ala., features a 600-pound electric pie, and may also be the only drop that has a song written about it. The “Big Orange
,” a 35-foot neon cool-looking, smiling orange rises on the side of the InterContinental Hotel in Miami, and a lit pineapple
represents Sarasota, Fla.’s celebration. 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. Eastern, which is midnight Greenwich Mean Time.
Chincoteague Island, Va., hosts an annual Pony Island Horseshoe Drop and Costume Promenade
at Robert Reed Downtown Park. This year's costume theme is All American Cowboys. Regardless of if you dress up or not, come out for the fun.
Join The Maritime & Seafood Industry Museum
in Biloxi, Miss., for its first annual Oyster Drop.
With the nickname “the City of Oaks,” it makes sense that an acorn
is lowered at First Night Raleigh (N.C.)
The Pensacola Pelican Drop
in Pensacola, Fla., features a 14-foot, half-ton illuminated pelican, with a 20-footwingspan. 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
from the top of the Jax Brewery Company. Over in Baton Rouge, the Red Stick Revelry
includes the descending of a nine-foot LED lit red stick in Town Square to signify the arrival of 2016.
The Wharf in Orange Beach, Ala., “reels” in the new year with its annual Marlin drop
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, a crown is raised in the Queen City of Charlotte during CLT New Year's Eve
and a possum-related drop at Clay’s Corner
in Brasstown, N.C.
Say "hello" to 2016 with the golf ball drop
from atop the Harbour Town Lighthouse in Sea Pines on Hilton Head Island, S.C.
Tennessee pays homage to its music heritage with the Music Note Drop
in Nashville, The 15-foot tall red music note is adorned with over 150 feet of LED lights. In Memphis, the new year is welcomed in with the Hard Rock Cafe Guitar Drop
McAllen, Texas New Year Eve's Bash
features something for all ages. Taking place at the McAllen Convention Center, festivities include live music entertainment, a magic show, illuminating laser light show and more.
Celebrate New Year's Eve in two time zones at Port St. Joe and Mexico Beach, Fla. with Celebrate Twice
. Start out in Port St. Joe (Eastern) and then hop on a trolley to Mexico Beach (Central). Don't forget about the daytime scavenger hunt to collect the much-needed party favors to celebrate and offer you a chance to win a trip back to the area in 2017.
Meet at Ken Combs Pier in Gulfport, Miss., for the New Year's Eve Light Up the Sk
y. Starting at 9 p.m., purchase a lantern, make a wish, prayer or resolution and then release it at midnight.
The New Year’s Eve Celebration
at The Umstead Hotel and Spa in Cary, N.C., takes place in the recently renovated Umstead Ballroom. The gala features will include small plates, desserts, an open bar and live music. Enjoy nonstop entertainment as you ring in the new year. $185 per person, inclusive.
Palm Beach Marriott Singer Island Beach Resort & Spa
on Singer Island, Fla., is hosting a 2016 New Year’s Eve Bash. It includes a three-course menu served from 5-7 p.m. ($65 per person) at 3800 Ocean. A four-course dinner will also be available from 8-10:30 p.m. ($125 per person). The second seating includes an Amuse Bouche, complimentary Champagne toast, live entertainment, DJ and dancing until 2 a.m.
photos: MoonPie Drop courtesy of RTJ Resorts; 2015 Pelican Drop courtesy of Visit Pensacola