Creative New Year's Countdowns

Let's be honest, not everyone is cut out to party until the wee hours on New Year's Eve. So, why not adopt another time zone for the evening? This party idea lets you have your pot-banging hurrah and still be in bed at a decent hour, an especially great idea if you're celebrating with little ones. All you need to do is pick a location with a time zone that is a bit (or a lot) ahead of your own. Plan decorations, foods, and games specific to the city or country you've picked, and then set your clock to their time. Eat, drink, be merry, and then have a fabulous countdown to welcome in the new year. Need some ideas to get you started? New Orleans: Serve gumbo, jumbalaya, and freshly fried beignets. Stock up on beads, hats, and other glittery adornments. Create a jazzy playlist and parade around the house or the street. Set up a table and have guests make their own Mardi Gras masks. Chicago: Serve deep-dish pizza, bratwurst, and caramel and cheese popcorn, and giant jelly beans in honor of the giant jelly bean-shaped Cloud Gate sculpture in Millennium Park. Have everyone don thick mustaches, reminiscent of the SNL guys who loved "da Bears and da Bulls" so very much. New York City: Serve thin-crust pizza, cheesecake, hot dogs, and of course, big apples. Designate your party room as Times Square and dangle a ball (even a soccer ball will do) to be dropped for your countdown. Philadelphia: Serve cheesesteak sandwiches (with Cheese Whiz if you want to be authentic!), soft pretzels, and an assortment of Italian Ice treats. Have a contest to see who can give the best Rocky impression. Miami: Serve Cuban sandwiches, colorful fruity drinks, and lots of latin dance music. Learn some salsa dance moves, teach your party guests, and have a dance off! London: Serve fish and chips, bangers and mash, finger sandwiches and assorted teas or hot wassail. Create a Big Ben clock to announce your countdown, and have a William and Kate lookalike contest. Those are my ideas. What are yours? What city would you like to be in to ring in the New Year?
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