Is New Year’s Eve A Public Holiday In the US?
New Year’s Eve 2024 in the US is not a public holiday and will be celebrated on 31 December. This day is not a federal holiday; however, it falls during the holiday season
for the country. As a result, most businesses, schools, and universities remain closed. As for retail stores and shops, they may stay open and close early,
or continue to be closed, depending on the whims of their owner. Government offices of states like Kentucky, Michigan, and Wisconsin, where NYE is a holiday
On the flip side, since most of America is indulging in late-night parties, Public Transportations in many places may offer reduced services during the day, but pick up the pace once evening falls. Cabs and such services are likely to run for a long time, till the early hours of dawn, to ensure safe home arrival of party-goers.
How Is New Year’s Eve Celebrated In the US?
The last day of the year is spent partying and counting down until the New Year begins by Americans. The New Year’s Eve celebrations entail fireworks at
midnight, parties throughout the night, drinks, adventurous activities in some places, and much more. If you wish to know how New Year’s Eve is celebrated in the US,
you can go two ways for that.
Either commemorate the American New Year, the traditional way or go party-hopping through some of the best bashes around the world. Then, end up at the world-famous ball drop at the Times Square in Manhattan, if you are in the area. Or if you are not there, then you can watch the ball drop in your area, as many places hold their own specialized ceremonies.
Ball Drop at Times Square, New York
There’s no list for New Year’s Eve in the US which doesn’t begin with the prominent ball drop of Manhattan. This crystal (and LED lights) ball is placed on top of a 77ft tall pole,
on the roof of One Times Square. At the one-minute mark, before midnight on NYE, it starts lowering slowly, and at exactly midnight reaches the bottom.
The outer surface of the ball is crafted with Waterford crystal panels in a triangular shape, all of which are inscribed with something associated with that year’s theme. Around that time, almost 3000 pounds of confetti was thrown by 100 volunteers at the crowd.
Some of these pieces include the wishes and hopes of New Year that people submit at the Wishing Wall of the Times Square, or online. The ball drop at Times Square is not only enjoyed by those present at the place but also watched live by thousands of people across the world.
New Year’s Eve In The US: Places With Ball Drops
The ball drop at Times Square is well known and quite famous. The event has been held every year since 1908. Taking notes from this astounding celebration, many other US states have also started the
tradition of ‘ball drop’, although, the ball is not necessarily literal in this case.
Various regions prefer using other objects instead of the ball at times. Let us take a look at places with ball drops while celebrating New Year’s Eve in the US:
1. People at Prestonsburg, Kentucky raise a star at midnight.
2. Ball drop happens at:
- Dewey Beach (Delaware)
- Fort Lauderdale (Florida)
- Kokomo (Indiana)
- Muncie (Indiana)
- Fort Wayne (Indiana)
- Berlin (Maryland)
- Grand Rapids (Michigan)
- Ludington (Michigan)
- Marquette (Michigan)
- Royal Oak (Michigan)
- Wyandotte (Michigan)
- Binghamton (New York)
- Buffalo (New York)
- Brocton (New York)
- Cheektowaga (New York)
- Cornwall (New York)
- North Tonawanda (New York)
- White Plains (New York)
- Wilson (New York)
- New Carlisle (Ohio)
- Yellow Springs (Ohio)
- New Carlisle (Ohio)
- Media (Pennsylvania)
- Gatlinburg (Tennessee)
- Knoxville (Tennessee)
- Charlottesville (Virginia)
- Fairhope (Alabama)
- Fort Smith (Arkansas)
- Destin (Florida)
- Fort Walton Beach (Florida)
- Rockford (Illinois)
- Columbus (Mississippi)
- Austin (Texas)
- Houston (Texas) – at noon
- Twin Falls (Idaho)
- Cheyenne (Wyoming)
- La Grande (Oregon)
4. Miami, Florida (the orange state) holds the “Big Orange Drop”. A 35 ft flat neon sign (lovingly called Mr Neon) in the shape of an orange with sunglasses is dropped at Hotel Intercontinental Miami. Another Orange drop takes place at Disneyland in Orange County, California.
5. Sarasota, Florida drops a glowing pineapple, Winter Haven, Florida (or Legoland) drops a Lego brick.
6. Atlanta, Georgia, capital of the Peach State hosts the famous Peach drop in Underground Atlanta.
7. Perry, Georgia lowers a buzzard, while Tallapoosa, Georgia prefers a stuffed opossum, and in Unadilla, Georgia as well as Fayetteville, Arkansas they drop a hog.
8. A disco ball is raised in Duluth, Georgia, and dropped in Baltimore, Maryland.
9. The ball in Macon, Georgia is decorated with metal cherry blossoms and pink lights to honour the International Cherry Blossom Festival.
10. Vincennes, Indiana drops an 18 ft Watermelon Ball first, and then 11 real watermelons from it.
11. A beach ball is dropped in Bangor (Maine), Ocean City (Maryland), Watertown (New York), and Panama City (Florida).
12. Fishes are also dropped in several places. Sardines are preferred in Eastport, Maine for their herring fishing and canning industry, and a walleye fish called “Captain Wylie Walleye” in Port Clinton, Ohio. In Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin, a carp caught by local fishers named Lucky is lowered to a throne. The carp represents the region’s fishing industry and according to Chinese culture is the luckiest fish.
13. Kennebunk, Maine and Burgaw, North Carolina drop a blueberry ball; while Machias, Maine has a giant plastic lobster holding blueberries and a shovel.
14. Traverse City, Michigan and Sister Bay, Wisconsin drop a cherry, whereas Emmett, Idaho raises one.
15. Temecula, California drops a bunch of grapes.
16. Easton, Maryland drops a red crab while Frederick, Maryland drops a giant key.
17. Havre de Grace, Maryland drops a duck, while Princess Anne, Maryland lowers Marshall P. Muskrat, a stuffed muskrat wearing a top hat and a bow tie.
18. Hagerstown, Maryland drops a doughnut.
19. Kalamazoo, Michigan lowers a recyclable ball. Hilton Head Island, South Carolina drops a golf ball to honour the Sea Pines Resort’s golf courses.
20. Niagara Falls, New York drops a 10ft Gibson Guitar.
21. A large red heart is lowered in Black Creek, North Carolina.
22. Charlotte, North Carolina raises a crown in honour of its nickname “The Queen City”.
23. Marion, North Carolina drops a gold nugget into a giant doughnut.
24. Raleigh, North Carolina drops a 900-pound acorn, in honour of the city’s nickname, “The City of Oaks”.
25. Chagrin Falls and Marion, Ohio drop a ball of popcorn and Elmore, Ohio lowers a sausage.
26. Folly Beach, South Carolina drops a giant pair of flip flops.
27. Richmond, Virginia raises a copy of the Times Square Ball. Oklahoma City also raises a ball.
28. As for some other places in Virginia: Roanoke and South Hill drop a star, Fredericksburg drops a pear, and The Pony Island Horseshoe Drop takes place in Chincoteague.
29. Mobile, Alabama drops a Moon Pie, Wetumpka – a meteorite, and Dothan, the Peanut Capital of the World lowers a peanut.
30. Pensacola, Florida drops a pelican.
31. Des Plaines, Illinois drops a diamond (not a real one, unfortunately).
32. Tell City, Indiana lowers an apple with an arrow through it honouring William Tell, the city’s namesake. On the other hand, Manhattan, Kansas drops an apple.
33. Cedar Falls, Iowa lowers a large cedar, while New Orleans, Louisiana drops a fleur-de-lis, and olive is dropped in Bartlesville, Oklahoma.
34. Memphis and Nashville drop a guitar.
35. Elevators are also raised in some places. That of the Skylon Tower in Niagara Falls, Ontario; and Tower of the Americas in San Antonio, Texas are two examples. The elevator of the Space Needle in Seattle, Washington, is also raised.
36. An 80-pound decorated cheese wedge is dropped in Plymouth, Wisconsin honouring the area’s dairy industry.
37. Flagstaff, Arizona drops a pine cone.
38. Prescott, Arizona drops a boot.
39. Yuma, Arizona drops lettuce in the so-called “Iceberg Drop”.
40. A giant potato is dropped in Boise, Idaho.
41. Chilli pepper is dropped in Las Cruces, New Mexico.
42. South Lake Tahoe, California lowers a gondola.
Pennsylvania requires a special mention as it has a vast range of objects dropped, being the state with most “ball drops”. These include:
Liberty Bell in Allentown, purple-and-gold shoe in Akron, beaver in Beavertown, yellow Peep in Bethlehem, a cow in Blain, bear in Boyertown, replica railroad wheel in Burnham, button in Carlisle, pretzel in Cleona, cannonball in Cornwall, and pickles in Dillsburg. It continues with a ‘fire truck’ ball in Drexel Hill, a sled in Duncannon, Haydn’s Jug in East Petersburg, Crayola crayon in Easton, goat in Falmouth, Hemlock tree in Halifax, and a replica of the Haines Shoe House in Hallam.
Then there’s the strawberry in Harrisburg, Pac-Man in Hanover, Hershey Kiss replica in Hershey, and candy in Highspire to commemorate the Knights Candy Store. Also, there’s a lollipop, french fry, mushroom , red rose, Lebanon Bologna, a bag of Hartley’s potato chips, a pair of yellow pants or ‘britches’, canal boat, kettle, ice cream cake, and wrench in various places.
Lititz raises a Moravian star, and Middletown drops a Rhombicuboctahedron, called “sphoctagon” (a portmanteau of sphere and octagon). In addition to this list is a tablet of Bayer aspirin dropped in Myerstown, box huckleberry in New Bloomfield, spring in Newville, giant show in Palmyra, and a sprint car in Port Royal.
A bottle of Yuengling beer is dropped in Pottsville, cigar in Richland and Womelsdorf, and a cigar held by a lion is raised in Red Lion. Alternatively, a chunk of coal is lowered, and it turns into a diamond at the bottom in Shamokin and Wilkes-Barre.
Shippensburg drops an anchor, Strasburg – ping pong balls. Sunbury lights an incandescent lamp as a homage to the Hotel Edison and its namesake, Thomas Edison. And finally, Tamaqua raises a group of eagles.
New Year’s Eve Observances
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|2022||Sat||31 December||New Year’s Eve||State Holidays, Ovservance|
|2023||Sun||31 December||New Year’s Eve||State Holidays, Ovservance|
|2024||Tue||31 December||New Year’s Eve||State Holidays, Ovservance|
|2025||Wed||31 December||New Year’s Eve||State Holidays, Ovservance|
1. Where should I go for New Year’s Eve in the US?
New Orleans, Las Vegas, Portland, Chicago, Los Angeles, Honolulu, and New York offer some of the best NYE bashes to enjoy. If you are hoping to go party-hopping on New Year’s Eve in the US, then these are the places to be.
2. What are the various ‘drops’ that happen across the USA on New Year’s Eve?
The tradition of ball drops or simply ‘drops’ has been prevalent in America since 1908. Apart from the famous ball drop of Times Square and Buffalo in New York, there are the peach drop in Atlanta, acorn drop in Raleigh, and ping pong balls in Strasburg.
3. What are the objects in drops related to?
Every region, province, and state of the USA model their objects for a drop, upon something essential to their area. This can be prevalent there – a substantial business, the sponsor of the event, their native fruits/vegetables/animal, and so on.
New Year’s Eve
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