New Year’s is a time to do out with the old and in with the new. So, if you’re tired of staying home and watching the same old ball drop at Times Square on TV, here are some fascinating New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day events and traditions from around the globe that could spice up your end of year celebrations.
Furniture throwing in South Africa
While some people just stick to throwing confetti, New Year’s Eve revelers in Johannesburg, South Africa have been known to throw furniture and appliances, including couches and refrigerators, out of windows and off of rooftops to celebrate the last night of the year.
Flaming Balls in Scotland
In Scotland, New Year’s Eve is known as Hogmanay and in Stonehaven, they celebrate with a fiery parade through the streets. Each year more than 10,000 spectators watch as kilt clad participants whirl balls of flame over the heads of the cheering crowd.
Kissing in Italy
Romance is in the air in Venice on December 31st when thousands of people gather in St. Mark’s Square for a mass kiss-in. Friends, lovers, and even strangers are encouraged to find someone to smooch in order to ring in the New Year.
Acorn dropping in North Carolina
Who needs a ball drop when you can see an acorn drop instead? On New Year’s Eve, the residents of Raleigh, North Carolina gather to make a wish on the giant decorative acorn when it touches the ground.
Dancing bears in Romania
The Roma people of Romania have an age-old tradition of celebrating the festival of Ursal between Christmas and New Year’s Day. By dressing up in bear skins and parading through the streets, they believe it will ward off evil spirits for the coming year and bring them good luck.