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New Year’s Traverse City Style

Every time I tell some one I spent New Year’s  watching a “cherry drop” I get blank looks.  I mean, like, “What is this all about?”

Well, it was actually a lot of fun. With our hosts, we headed from Glen Arbor, Michigan into Traverse City on a foggy, misty kind of night.   Old Sherlock Holmes movies come to mind. It was erie driving through f og layered on top of snow. But soon, kawabunga,   the big cherry suspended high up  in the middle of this tourist town came into view. 

In Traverse City–one of the better known cities  in Michigan–and a center for tourists, boating, camping, golf, winter sports and the cherry industry–we discovered a vibrant night life. Folks milling about, dancing, laughing and having fun while they  waited for the giant cherry to drop. Even a giant cherry meandered around available for photos.

Like many of these folks,  we enjoyed dinner in a cozy restaurant,  raised our flutes of champagne in toasts and savored being together  to welcome another year.  After dinner, before the magic hour, we wandered through the streets to discover a large display of vintage snow mobiles  in the window of an insurance agency.  Only in Traverse City, huh?

Soon, the time came to focus on the big lighted red cherry, count down from ten,  kiss and hug, make silly noises and that kind of thing.  The huge cherry is a wonderful symbol of the area and a big draw……. not exactly like Times Square, but fun nonetheless. Maybe more.

And then……. what to do on New Year’s Day besides watch football? We got a good start to the New Year with a  brisk walk to see Lake Michigan fierce in its winter turbulence.  The temperatures had dropped. Fog gone.  The waves  rolled in.

What a great way to start 2011.

Post Author
Susan J. Smith
Susan's career includes writing for newspapers, lots of community work and a wonderful family life. Now she is enjoying traveling, photography and writing for DesignDestinations and Grand Rapids Magazine. She welcomes you on her journey and appreciates your comments.


  1. posted by
    Cindy Schad`
    Jan 6, 2011 Reply

    Actually, sounds like a lovely way to spend a New Year’s Eve!

  2. posted by
    Kathy Pleune
    Jan 6, 2011 Reply

    Sounds like fun! WE left TC on December 27 so missed all the New Years festivities. We enjoyed our Florida New Years; however, no cherry dropped here!

  3. posted by
    Nancie Billingsley
    Jan 6, 2011 Reply

    Susan, loved spending time with you at our home before dinner. I am enjoying your blog! Just wanted to let you know that the place that had the vintage snowmobiles is Hagerty Insurance, which is the largest classic vehicle insurance company in the country. Come back next week and they may have a Model T or a Corvette convertible in the window. Cheers!

  4. posted by
    Jan 7, 2011 Reply

    Nancy, We enjoyed meeting you too. Thanks for the clarification about the vintage snow mobiles. How fun to be able to see these vintage vehicles all the time. sjs

  5. posted by
    Jan 9, 2011 Reply


  6. posted by
    Jan 9, 2011 Reply

    WHAT FUN??????

  7. posted by
    Another New Year Celebration has Come and Gone | DesignDestinations
    Jan 3, 2012 Reply

    […] read more about celebrating Traverse City style, check out this blog post about last year’s Traverse City New Year’s.    Both were […]

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