For many American citizens, it is the norm on New Year’s Eve to go to a house party, guzzle a few glasses of champagne and watch the ball drop in Times Square on a major television network. However, for those wishing for a more untraditional celebration, there were countless bizarre ways to ring in the New Year.
1. The Electronic MoonPie Drop in Mobile, Alabama
The MoonPie is a famous southern pastry filled with graham cracker and marshmallow, and is covered with a thin layer of delicious chocolate. Less traditional than this beloved pastry, however, is the annual dropping of a giant electronic MoonPie in Mobile, Alabama. Despite a tornado watch and torrential downpours, a whopping 40,000 people attended the eccentric event. Whether the attendance was a testimony to the devotion to the dessert or to the need to believe the existence of this peculiar celebration is unclear. Nevertheless, this untraditional New Year’s Eve party has clearly become a tradition for much of Alabama and beyond.
2. The Snooki Ball Drop on MTV
Although half of America groans at the mere mention of Jersey Shore, the overwhelming success of the series has forced it to become a prevalent part of pop culture. In true capitalistic style, MTV fed on its success yet again and had their New Year’s Eve celebration on the shores of Seaside Heights, New Jersey. The night’s music was provided by Jersey Shore cast member DJ Pauly D as MTV reflected on media and celebrity milestones in 2010. The highlight of the night, however, was Jersey Shore character Snooki descending in a giant, hollow ball. Ideal for both fanatics of the show and those who wish to see Snooki publicly humiliate herself alike, MTV’s New Year’s Eve special offered something for everyone.
3. The Drag Queen Drop in Key West, Florida
Although the ball dropping in Times Square has true quintessential value, it is missing an important quality: Fabulousness. There was no shortage of fabulousness in Key West, Florida, when a drag queen named Sushi was dropped in a giant red high heel outside of the famous Bourbon Street Pub. As Sushi descended upon an eager crowd, she popped a bottle of champagne to signal the joyous New Year. Key West may be the official city of outlandish New Year’s celebrations, as alternate partying options included a conch shell and pirate wench drop.
4. The Wig Drop on Bravo
I am slightly ashamed to admit that I am a Real Housewives-aholic. My knowledge of all Bravo housewives is both extensive and embarrassing, ranging from New Jersey to Beverly Hills and all the editions in between. It is no surprise then that I spent my New Years’ watching Watch What Happens Live: Andy’s New Year’s Eve Party on Bravo. Andy Cohen, the show’s host, is a Bravo celebrity known for interviewing housewives and stars of other Bravo shows after new episodes are premiered. The incredibly hilarious Cohen spent his two-hour episode awarding liquor bottles to winners of silly categories while welcoming a slew of Bravo, ahem, “celebrities”. The highlight of the evening, however, was a disco ball adorned in a frizzy wig in honor of Atlanta housewife Kim Zolciak’s infamous thick and overbearing coif. It was an entertaining evening from beginning to end, as it concluded with the marriage of Housewives of Beverly Hill’s pomeranian Jiggy and Housewives of New Jersey’s hairless cat Grandma Wrinkles.
5. The Lighted Year Change at Ithaca College in Ithaca, New York
The Towers dorm complex on Ithaca College’s campus is visible throughout the city of Ithaca, New York. What better way for this charming town to celebrate than to watch the illuminated year change from “10” to “11” on the towering buildings at the strike of midnight! This tradition has been attracting Tompkins County locals for years and continues to create a sense of unity across the liberal area. I may be biased, as Ithaca College is my place of higher education and the home of Buzzsaw magazine, but this observance is both a classy and celebratory way to honor the New Year.
A YouTube video of this year’s festivities: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6DDYg_yC0Vo