List of objects dropped on New Year's Eve

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On New Year's Eve, many localities in America mark the beginning of a year through the raising or lowering of an object. Many of these events are patterned off festivities that have been held at New York City's Times Square since 1908, where a large crystal ball is lowered down a pole atop One Times Square (beginning its descent at 11:59 p.m. local time, and concluding at midnight). In turn, the event was inspired by the time balls used by ship navigators in the 19th century to calibrate their chronometers.

Whilst some of these events use a ball in imitation of Times Square, many "drops" utilize objects that represent an aspect of local culture, geography, or history. Ball drops are by far the most common in, but not exclusive to, the United States.

List of drops or raises by time zone and location[edit]

Atlantic Time Zone[edit]

North American Eastern Time Zone[edit]

Florida[edit]

Note: The Florida Panhandle is in the Central Time Zone.


Georgia[edit]

Indiana[edit]

Maine[edit]

  • Bangor, Maine: A beach ball covered in Christmas lights has been thrown off the top of a local restaurant since 2005.[48]
  • Eastport, Maine: A sardine is dropped in a nod to the area’s history in the herring fishing and canning industry. This is the second of two object drops in Eastport (see also "Atlantic Time Zone" above). Both objects were created by sculptor Bill Schaefer of East Machias.[1][49]

Maryland[edit]

Michigan[edit]

New Jersey[edit]

Nicole Polizzi dropped in Seaside Heights in 2011.

New York[edit]

New York holds many elaborate drops, particularly the ball drop at Times Square and at the Electric Tower in Buffalo. The state falls in second place for the most items dropped on New Year's Eve.

North Carolina[edit]

Raleigh drops its symbol, an acorn.
Mt. Olive Pickle Drop

Ohio[edit]

Ontario[edit]

Pennsylvania[edit]

Pennsylvania is the state where the most objects are dropped on New Year's Eve.[111]

South Carolina[edit]

Tennessee (Eastern)[edit]

Virginia[edit]

US Central Time Zone[edit]

Alabama[edit]

Arkansas[edit]

Florida Panhandle[edit]

Illinois[edit]

Iowa[edit]

Kansas[edit]

Louisiana[edit]

Mississippi[edit]

  • Columbus, Mississippi: An illuminated 10-foot wide by 10-foot tall lit aluminum ball is hoisted over College Street 100 feet high as part of the "Having a Ball Downtown Block Party". Festivities are broadcast live on WCBI.[185] No longer airs!

Missouri[edit]

  • Kansas City, Missouri: Michael "The Doughboy" Maslak, the longest-tenured improviser at the ComedyCity improv theater, is draped in lights and dropped by members of the troupe.[186]

Oklahoma[edit]

Tennessee (Central and Western)[edit]

Texas[edit]

  • Austin, Texas: Families in the Austin Woods neighborhood traditionally celebrate the new year with large illuminated new year's balls hung from trees, which are lowered at varying times during New Year's Eve. Downtown, a Lone Star was dropped until 2006, then replaced with a simple mirrored ball.[196]
  • Houston, Texas: A star representing the Lone Star State is raised at midnight.[197] There is also a Noon Ball Drop at the Children's Museum of Houston for families to celebrate New Year's Noon.[198]
  • McAllen, Texas: A giant mirrored ball descends just before midnight. The first orb for 2008 was six feet in diameter, but in 2009 McAllen's big bash was expanded to include a bigger crowd (10,000 attended), a bigger party space and the bigger "Texas-sized" ball used ever since.[199]
  • San Antonio, Texas: The elevator on the Tower of the Americas is raised.

Wisconsin[edit]

  • Plymouth, Wisconsin: Plymouth drops an 80-pound decorated cheese wedge, the newest Wisconsin cheese, from a 100 ft. ladder truck in a tribute to the region's dairy industry and dairy products. The Plymouth Arts Center hosts the annual “Build Your Own New Year’s Party” next to the Creamery Building's parking lot where "The Big Cheese Drop" takes place.[200][201][202]
  • Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin: A carp (real but dead) caught by local fishers and weighing between 25 and 30 pounds is lowered. A carp was chosen to represent the area's fishing industry and because the carp is considered one of the luckiest fish in Chinese culture. The carp, nicknamed “Lucky”, is lowered onto a throne. Each “Lucky” has a tree planted where it is buried with a commemorative plaque listing the carp's name and year.[104][203]

US Mountain Time Zone[edit]

Arizona[edit]

The deuce of clubs is dropped in Show Low, Arizona.
  • Flagstaff, Arizona: A pine cone is dropped from the balcony of Weatherford hotel.[204][205][206]
  • Tempe, Arizona: An illuminated sunburst was dropped while the Fiesta Bowl Block Party and Parade was sponsored by Sunkist,[207][208][209][210] but replaced by a Giant Tortilla Chip when Tostitos Tortilla Chips took over the sponsorship from Sunkist. The party is 10 blocks long and four blocks wide with two fireworks shows (10 p.m. and midnight).[211]
  • Show Low, Arizona: A deuce of clubs (2♣) debuted in 2011–12. The card, which is the namesake of the main road through Show Low, is, according to legend the origin of the town's name (the town's founders allegedly derived the name "show low" from a game of poker where the winner showed a 2♣, the lowest card in the deck).[212]
  • Tucson, Arizona: Starting in 2014, a large replica Taco will be dropped from the roof of the Hotel Congress [213]
  • Prescott, Arizona: A boot is dropped

Idaho[edit]

  • Boise, Idaho: Since 2014, a giant potato has been dropped from the US Bank building in downtown Boise.[214][215] On September 16, 2015, it was announced that for 2016, the event was moving two blocks northeast to the Idaho State Capitol building.[216]
  • Emmett, Idaho: Since 2016, a cherry has been raised.[217]
  • Twin Falls, Idaho: Since 2002, a metal ball, bought at auction for $14 by Dave Woodhead—owner of the former bar Woody's, has been dropped from a pair of grain elevators. The low-budget event attracted a cult following: later editions also switched from a manual pulley to using a 1961 Ford Econoline truck to lower the ball. Following the lease of the bar to new owners, the event was placed on hiatus for 2014, but returned for 2015 in partnership with the new owners. Woodhead acknowledged the drop's inclusion on lists of New Year's Eve drops on Mental Floss and Wikipedia as a sign of notoriety for the event.[218][219]

New Mexico[edit]

US Pacific Time Zone[edit]

California[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

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External links[edit]