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Celebrate New Year 2024 With Top 11 US Traditions

by Note with Love Team - Dec 31, 2023
Celebrate New Year 2024 With Top 11 US Traditions blog header

Millions of Americans will be gathered when the clock strikes midnight on new year's eve 2023, to say goodbye to this year and greet the next one with open arms, hopes, aspirations, and opportunities. People all around the US celebrate this holiday in diverse ways according to their culture, region, and personal preferences, making it one of the most lively and welcoming time of the year.

As New Year's Eve and Day celebrations are deeply ingrained in American society, each region adds its own traditions for new year. Here, we will look at a few of the greatest New Year traditions in the USA  that will make New Year's Eve 2023 really special.

1. The Times Square Ball Drop - An Iconic Spectacle

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The famous Times Square Ball Drop in New York City is one of the most famous traditions for New Year's eve celebration. It's a must-mention when talking about American New Year's customs and also the main New Year event in New York.

This world-famous event brings thousands of people in Times Square, New York, as well as millions of television watchers, to see a massive crystal ball fall from a pole on top of a skyscraper. As the clock strikes twelve, a sparkling ball drops, signaling the start of a new chapter. Following the ball drop comes a stunning fireworks display, confetti shower, and a rendition of "Auld Lang Syne," a traditional song that says farewell to the old year. 

2. Eat Black-Eyed Peas and Greens  - Culinary Tradition

Wait did you think we meant the band by black eyed peas? No, no, we meant the food.

New year traditions in the USA  revolve heavily around food, with many Americans believing that eating specific meals on this day may grant them good fortune and financial success throughout the year. A dinner with black-eyed peas, collard greens, and cornbread is a popular dish among them.

Greens signify money, black-eyed peas for prosperity, and cornbread for gold. During the Civil War, black-eyed peas were deemed animal food and were therefore spared by Union forces, becoming a mainstay for Confederate soldiers and slaves.

3. Fireworks Extravaganza

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In America, New Year's celebrations are inextricably linked to fireworks displays. Cities all throughout the nation light up the night sky with brilliant bursts of color, from the stunning display over the San Francisco Bay to the Chicago skyline. Families and friends make lifelong memories join together to enjoy the stunning views and make lasting memories.

4. Kiss Someone at Midnight

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While discussing American customs, how can we miss sharing a kiss under the mistletoe at midnight? It is one of the most popular and romantic New Year's eve American traditions.

For the upcoming year, this is meant to solidify your bond and guarantee contentment and love. This custom may have originated from the old European custom of sharing a kiss under the mistletoe, a plant that represents fertility and peace. However, the exact origins of this custom are unknown. Some claim that it originated with the English and German tradition of kissing the first person you encounter each year in an attempt to bring good fortune.

5. Polar Bear Plunges - Into the Cold

Photo by Daniel Turkewitz on Timeout

Taking part in a Polar Bear Plunge is the ideal choice for those tough people looking for an exciting way to start the New Year. 

This is a New Year's Day ritual that originated in different coastal regions of the United States, including California, Florida, and New Jersey. No matter how cold it gets, People flock at lakes and beaches to take a cold plunge into the icy waters. Even though some people might find this absurd, the idea is to start over in the new year by wiping out the previous one!

6. New Year's Resolutions - A Personal Tradition

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Many Americans follow the age-old custom of making resolutions for the new year. Resolutions provide an opportunity for introspection and personal development, regardless of the type of commitment—be it learning a new skill, losing weight, leaving smoking, or building closer relationships. But it's easier said than done, as many individuals lose passion or forget their resolutions as the year goes on. According to one poll, just around 8% of Americans follow through on their resolutions. 

7. New Year's Day Parades

Photo from Tripsavvy

For many Americans, the holiday's parades, which highlight the zest and uniqueness in various towns, are the perfect way to start the new year. One of the most renowned is the Rose Parade in Pasadena, California, which began in 1890 and features extravagant floats decked with flowers, marching bands, and horse troops.

A few of other well-known parades are the Cotton Bowl Parade in Dallas and the Mummers Parade in Philadelphia, which originated in the 17th century and spans folks dressed in costumes who perform music, dance, and sing through the streets. These festivities serve as an emblem of the hope and vitality that accompany the beginning of a new year.

8. Put on red underwear

Latin American cultures—including those of Mexico, Brazil, and Spain—are the root of this quirky and hilarious New Year's Eve custom. The belief is that by donning red underwear on New Year's Eve, one can draw passion and love the following year.

Additionally, some individuals wear different colored underwear to represent different aspirations. For example, yellow might represent money, green can represent health, and white can represent peace. It is not necessary to buy or get the underwear; it just has to be brand-new and worn just once.

9. Ballroom Dancing on New Year's Eve

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One of the high-fashion new year traditions in the USA is Ballroom dancing. It takes center stage on New Year's Eve, since dance has traditionally been a worldwide language of celebration. Elegant parties with dance floors, live music, and opportunities for guests to show off their grooves are held in many cities. These events provide a beautiful and enjoyable opportunity to ring in the New Year in style, regardless of how much you know dancing!

10. Send A Gift 

Photo by Julia Larson on Pexels

One of the underrated new year's eve American traditions is to send a gift to loved ones, friends or neighbors on the new year. Although it's not a common custom for Americans to exchange presents on New Year's Day per se, gift-giving is a common part of the holiday season that precedes the celebration. If you are not a big gift-er, you can send them beautiful Happy New Year greetings to add happiness to your loved ones' day.

11. Make a Thank-you Note

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Writing thank-you letters is a long-standing cultural custom in the United States, and it is regarded as a courteous and kind manner of expressing thanks. People are taught to write thank-you cards from an early age and frequently do so after attending events, getting presents, or being offered an act of generosity.

There is plenty to be grateful for when it comes to Americans celebrating the New Year, whether you find yourself enthralled with the sparkling lights of Times Square, the daring of participants in the Polar Bear Plunge, or wearing costumes in New Year's Day parades. To celebrate the traditions that make the New Year a time of joy, hope, and fresh starts, take a moment to savor them when the clock hits twelve and fireworks sparkle in the sky. To a spectacular 2024! Cheers!

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