'Buzzard Drop' to Mark Perry's New Year's Eve | News
Perry plans to ring in 2014 with a downtown "Buzzard Drop" celebration.
City officials announced the event at a Tuesday morning news conference.
They said the event is inspired by offbeat New Year's celebrations in other cities that drop a giant bologna, a possum or a moonpie.
It celebrates the buzzards' annual return to Perry each fall and features a mascot character: Bob the Buzzard.
Bob will descend from a replica of the Perry water tower.
The New Year's Eve festivities will start at 9 p.m. on Perry's Courthouse Square. It will feature live music from the Celebration Band.
It's free and open to the public. Alcohol will be sold on site.
Here is the news release from the city and chamber of commerce:
Downtown Perry to Celebrate the New Year with Buzzard Drop
October 1, 2013 Perry - The City of Perry and its new Main Street Affiliate Advisory Board announced a new event in Downtown Perry today-the First Annual Perry Buzzard Drop. A New Year's Eve celebration, the Buzzard Drop promises to have Central Georgia "Buzzing" over the next several months.
Unveiled by Mayor Jimmy Faircloth and Main Street Board Member Susan Scragg, the debut of the Buzzard Drop was well-attended by many of the Perry business community. With a reading of the Legend of the Buzzard, Mayor Faircloth heralded in a new era for Downtown Perry, and a new tradition:
The Legend of the Buzzard:
New Year's Eve 2013 will not be your typical "Crystal Ball Drop," in Downtown Perry. Yes, it's true, New York City may host the Apple Drop where over a million people gather to watch as a large, lighted apple descends upon Times Square, and Georgia's own Atlanta will host the pride of the Peach State's Peach Drop at Lennox Square. However, here in Perry, we were thinking something more original.
Inspired by the creativity of Lebanon, PA, home of the Giant Bologna Drop, and Brasstown, NC, where a live possum drops at the stroke of midnight to ring in the New Year, we sought something unique that we could lay claim to. We looked west to our neighbors in Mobile, AL, and admired the Moonpie they so proudly venerate each New Year's Eve, and as we thought and searched our hearts, it became clear: We Will Drop...a Buzzard!
"Why a Buzzard?", you may ask. A little known fact of our historic town is the much-anticipated (or despised, depending on who's opinion you ask...) return of the Buzzards each fall to Perry. And, they're back! First spotted in mid-September, hundreds of Buzzards begin to make roost in high points throughout the City, where they stay throughout the winter months. Early in the morning, you see them-lighting in trees and on radio towers, standing guard as the day breaks, flying off for a busy day's work, and circling back, high in the sky in the afternoon-you can almost set your clock by them when they're here. Their favorite haunt, well known to locals, is the water tower. Cliché really, if you think about it.
And so, we decided to honor our seasonal, migratory friends with the First Annual Perry Buzzard Drop on New Year's Eve 2013. But, how did the Buzzard decide to call Perry home for its Winter Sojourn? Let me share with you, the Legend of the Buzzard...
Several years ago, Bob the Buzzard was sitting in a cold, stark tree somewhere North of the Mason-Dixon Line, freezing his "feathers" off (among other things), when he suddenly decided there had to be a better life than this. Bob had heard tell of this notion of Southern hospitality-these dazzling personalities, full of charm, quick wit, and a natural ability to make even the most undesirable guest feel welcome.
With that (and a 60-degree winter) in mind, Bob and several of his family members soared into the air headed South. Flying over state after state searching for some Southern-style, deep-fried, "clean-up work," they finally spotted what they had been looking for-a community to call home, one that already had a local outpost known as The Buzzard's Roost! What more could Bob want?
Settling in in Perry, Georgia, Bob soon found the rumors to be true-the hype of "Serving Southern" was as good as it sounded. Perry was a warm and welcoming town, in both character and temperature, and the eclectic personalities for which the South is known also translated into a good time while the Buzzards wintered in middle Georgia.
Bob and his family spent the winter in Perry and when they traveled back North in the spring, they spread the word among their friends. Large numbers of this unappreciated and often-misunderstood fowl began to make the annual trek to Perry to spend the long winter months. Soon Bob and his friends became as much a part of the landscape in Perry as the Clock Tower at the Fairgrounds-they're arrival signaling a change of seasons and new traditions.
Complete with a replica of the Water Tower to honor the arrival of the Buzzards in Perry for the event announcement, the "official" Bob the Buzzard will be revealed on New Year's Eve.
The New Year's Eve festivities will start at 9:00pm in Downtown Perry on the Courthouse Square with live music from the Celebration Band, featuring a variety of party and dance music, from the 1960s until today's latest hits.
Free to the public, the Perry Buzzard Drop will offer spirits sold on-site, along with New Year's novelty and souvenir items from this First Annual Event. The Countdown will begin just before Midnight, with Mayor Faircloth ringing in the New Year as Bob makes his descent onto the Courthouse Square. With live music, confetti and a balloon release, get ready for a Party in Perry to celebrate 2014!
As part of the evening's festivities, Perry's Downtown restaurants and businesses will stay open late, offering food and drink specials.
In the coming weeks, the Main Street Affiliate Advisory Board will release more details about the event, unveiling the Buzzard Drop logo, Facebook page, and website at www.perrybuzzarddrop.com.
For further information about the Perry Buzzard Drop, please contact the City of Perry's Economic Development Director, Mary Beth Bass at (478) 988-2757.