MOUNT OLIVE—If anything, the Mt. Olive Pickle New Year’s Eve Pickle Drop has become quite the family event.
“We have tons of children and families here,” said company spokesperson Lynn Williams. “It’s early, it’s free, it’s short, and it’s just plain fun, too. What else would we drop on New Year’s Eve in Mount Olive?”
Mt. Olive Pickle Company – makers of the second best-selling brand of pickles in the US — will hold the 14th annual New Year’s Eve Pickle Drop Monday, December 31, 2012 at the Corner of Cucumber & Vine. Founded in 1926, the company takes its name from its hometown.
The Pickle Drop in recent years has been recognized as a top New Year’s Eve attraction by TripAdvisor.com, ranking as the No. 1 quirkiest New Year’s Eve celebration in 2010.
The New Year’s Eve Pickle descends down the company flagpole at the stroke of 7 p.m. midnight – that’s 7 o’clock EST, which also happens to be midnight Greenwich Mean Time. “That way, we are official, we shout Happy New Year! – and we don’t have to stay up until midnight,” Williams said.
The event starts at 6 p.m. with live music, free refreshments, and a canned food drive for the Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina. The pickle comes down the company’s 45-foot-flagpole and into a perfectly preserved redwood pickle tank just one hour later.
In case folks can’t make the drop, it will again be broadcast live via webcast on www.mtolivepickles.com.
Live music will be presented by The Harmony Boys, a Pickle Drop staple, as well as Dr. Alan Armstrong, who plays the bagpipes once the pickle has made its timely descent.
In addition to the music, the crowds can enjoy free refreshments – hot chocolate, cookies, and Mt. Olive Pickles, of course –and browse the company’s gift shop, which will remain open until just before 7 p.m.
Those bringing donations for the Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina receive a chance to win door prizes, including a pool pickle like the one the company uses for New Year’s Eve. The company also awards pickles to the family who has traveled the farthest to attend. The three declared winners last year hailed from Chile, Australia, and Canada. (Okay, we were just being nice on the last one.)
Over 3,000 people gathered at the Corner of Cucumber & Vine to welcome 2012, and Williams anticipates another big crowd for 2013.
“Much depends on the weather. But every year we make adjustments to enable us to make more room for the crowds,” she said. “This year we are closing off the area around the Corner of Cucumber & Vine to all traffic to make things safer. So we are asking everyone to be sure to watch for directions for parking when they arrive at Mt. Olive Pickle.
“And like always, we encourage people to get here early – the whole thing’s over at 7:05…”
Tyesha Lucas. Goldsboro Daily News: Curtis Media 2012