'Snooki' Polizzi? Nope. Try these 10 weirdest New Year's Eve celebrations.
'Snooki' Polizzi or a big Times Square ball? Please. How about a fish, a rodent, or an enormous roll of lunch meat? When these cities party on New Year's Eve, they get creative.
Whoopdedoo, say a handful of cities across America.
Why not try dropping an item that has something to do with the local history or that is so confusing and intriguing that it gets people to search the history books? (Or at least the Internet.)
Or, playing on their town’s nautical name, the über-celebration stylists of Shippensburg, Pa., will once again drop a giant anchor, punctuated by a laser light show when the anchor hits the ground.
Here are 10 other New Year's Eve festivities that put Times Square to shame and don't need reality TV-star Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi:
• Bethlehem, Pa., is the headquarters of Just Born Inc., the makers of those yellow, sugar-covered birds placed in Easter baskets alongside chocolate eggs. So they will be dropping a giant, candy replica of a “peep” that is 4-1/2 feet tall and five feet wide.
• Are you ready for Walleye Madness at Midnight? Port Clinton, Ohio, has been for 14 years. In the self-proclaimed walleye capital of the world, what else could fall from the sky but a 20-foot, 600-pound fiberglass walleye?
• Mechanicsburg, Pa., will be hosting its seventh annual wrench drop to highlight the fact that their city was founded by mechanics who fixed the wagons heading west in the early 1800s. The special guest and keynote speaker will be Benjamin Franklin. Yes, that Benjamin Franklin.
• Yet Brasstown's claim to New Year's Eve opossum supremacy is not unchallenged. Tallapoosa, Ga., also drops its own possum, with the local paper making proclamations such as: "Now that Christmas is over, it’s time to officially begin preparing your New Year’s resolutions and to watch Spencer the ‘possum drop in his ball." Because, as any good Tallapoosian will tell you, how can you possibly drop a New Year's Eve possum if he's not surrounded by a ball of twinkle lights?
• Dillsburg, Pa., the town named for immigrant Matthew Dill from County Monaghan, Ireland, who settled the town in 1740, will be outdoing its past ritual of dropping a giant pickle replica this year. That is because Mr. Pickle was married in the May Pickle Fest, the town will be dropping a pregnant Mrs. Pickle. The spectacle will happen at 7 p.m. for families, while Mr. Pickle will again be dropped at midnight. Dillsburg Senior Center volunteers will make pickle soup, which it prepares only twice a year.
• Perhaps Dillsburg feels pressure to outdo itself from Mt. Olive, N.C., the home of Mt. Olive Pickle Company. The company website triumphantly exclaims: "The New Year's Eve Pickle descends down the Mt. Olive Pickle Company flagpole at the stroke of 7 p.m. midnight – that's 7 o'clock EST, which also happens to be midnight Greenwich Mean Time."
• The city of Lebanon, Pa., will drop a 12-foot, 150-pound real Lebanese bologna to usher in the New Year, and to highlight the innards of its special-recipe bologna fashioned by the local Pennsylvania Dutch residents after slow-cured European sausages.
• Because of money concerns and lowering attendance in recent years, Middletown, Pa., will be dropping its tradition altogether. The borough has 9,000 residents and perhaps 100 showed last year for the “sphoctagon drop” – a combination sphere/octagon which was invented by a local metal fabricator just for the occasion.
Given the wide array of other New Year's Eve "drops" in Pennsylvania, borough Councilmember Scott Sites concedes: “We have such great competitive attractions in nearby towns that I don’t think people will miss this one at all.”