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Archive for December, 2012

2013 – Happy New Year!

Posted: December 26th, 2012 by

We’ve survived! The world did not come to an end on 12-21-2012!  It’s now time to celebrate . . .

220px-2000_times_square_ball_at_waterfordIt began in 1907, the iconic Times Square ‘ball’ drop at 11:59 pm capturing New Yorkers and a nation  to herald in the New Year.  This year, some 8 million plus folks in New York City alone, with an estimated audience of  over a  billion people throughout the world joining in to celebrate the new year of 2013.  The ball started out with 100 incandescent light bulbs, iron and wood in its construction, but has evolved over time, and with advances in technology, now features LED lighting, crystal panels and a much larger size. 

Other cities ring in the new year with similar drops: in Florida you might see a 200 pound Tangerine drop, or a six foot Queen Conch Shell (Key West),  Miami is home of the “Big 35’ Orange” drop, and there is the Peach Drop, broadcast worldwide from Undergound in Atlanta, Georgia.  Some not so well known drops include a 500-pound-steel-and-foam “Watermelon Ball “in Vincennes, Indiana; a “Sardine” in Eastport, Maine;  Traverse City, Michigan features a “Cherry” drop;pioglet Niagara Falls features a 10’ “Gibson Guitar” dropped from the Hard Rock Café;  Mount Olive, North Carolina features its ‘Pickle” lowering; Cincinnati proves pigs can fly when a “a Flying Pig” is part of their celebration; and, in Mobile, Alabama, it’s the “Moon Pie” drop . . . to learn more about hundreds of drops, lowering, raising and simply celebrating the New Year, visit http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_objects_dropped_on_New_Year%27s_Eve

What about other cities and countries.  How do they celebrate the New Year? 

Ecuadorians  use scarecrow like dummy’s to represent something that happened in the past year.  At midnight  the dummy will be put on fire, and as it goes up in smoke firecrackers are lit, adding to the festivities.  “Ano Viejo . . . Gelukkig Nieuwjaar!  So the Dutch say to wish you a Happy New Year . . . and the Filipino will wish you a “Masaya Bagong Taon” while Romanians say “An Nou Fericit” and Spaniards will utter “Feliz Ano Nuevo” . . .

Adding to many well wishes in a variety of languages are various traditions, like wearing yellow to enhance your chance for abundance and more money … something many in South American countries subscribe to; however,  in other areas food is part of the New Year celebration.  Some foods  represent money (cabbage), living a long life (sauerkraut), 12 grapes (happiness), or a traditional black-eyed peas, ham and collard green meal for health, wealth and happiness.

Perhaps the last, and hopefully the most enduring, tradition for the New Year are the resolutions, which dates back to the early Babylonians when a popular resolution was to return borrowed farm equipment.  Today the number one and two resolutions (not necessarily in that order) are to lose weight and quit smoking . . . how about you, what is your resolution?

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