(VINCENNES) - One of the nation's most unusual New Year's Eve spectacles - the Watermelon Drop - is coming to Vincennes, Indiana on Dec. 31.
For the fourth year, the Vincennes skyline will feature an 18-foot, 500-pound watermelon rise in the air as a large crowd begins the countdown. At the stroke of midnight, 12 Knox County-grown watermelons will drop 100-feet onto a "splatform" accompanied by a large fireworks display.
New this year will be several costumed watermelon slice characters that will add to the festivities.
"As one of the nation's best watermelon-growing regions, there is no better way to usher in the New Year than with a Watermelon Drop," said John Frenz, co-chair of the event's organizing committee. "The large crowds that this event has attracted the past three years prove that people love watermelons - even on New Year's Eve. It is our way to celebrate in true Hoosier-style."
Since its creation in 2008, the 18-foot watermelon has become a star attraction in Vincennes, with people applauding its procession in the town's July 4th and Christmas parades.
The giant watermelon has also been widely featured in the news media, including the CBS Sunday Morning show, and featured on YouTube videos. People also enjoy sharing photographs of them standing next to the 18-foot-high watermelon, an opportunity available throughout the day on Dec. 31 before it is hoisted high in the air on New Year's Eve. The Watermelon Drop site is adjacent to Vincennes' Riverfront Pavilion located at the corner of First and Busseron streets.
"The site allows activities to take place under one roof with restroom facilities, electrical power, and propane heaters. The site is also near several commercial businesses and fraternal organizations that sponsor New Year's events, making downtown Vincennes the place to be on New Year's Eve," Frenz said.
Beginning at 9 p.m. (EST), revelers at the Riverfront Pavilion will enjoy food, drink, music,
games, noisemakers and of course, fun. There will also be a DJ and Karaoke. An assortment of Watermelon Drop clothing and novelty items will also be for sale.
"Last year's Watermelon Drop was big and this year's event should be even bigger as word of the celebration continues to spread. In fact, at the rate this event is growing, the networks may soon want to add Vincennes to its televised coverage of worldwide New Year's Eve extravaganzas. There are few spectacles like this one," Frenz said.
Indiana's first city, founded in 1732, Vincennes is the county seat of Knox County, well-known for its multi-million dollar melon crops that are shipped throughout the nation.
The Watermelon Drop will be broadcast live on www.wzdm.com and locally on NewWave
Products that may be purchased at the Watermelon Drop include pizza, liquor, beer, coffee, hot chocolate, cider, water, soda, toy novelties, glow sticks, and Watermelon Drop t-shirts, sweatshirts and hats.
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