CLEVELAND — Ringing in the new year is going to look and feel much different this year with the pandemic raging on throughout the country. But many local events are still taking place but the celebrations are happening virtually.
In Port Clinton, "the walleye capital of the world", the annual Walleye Drop will be streamed live on YouTube. Organizers with the Wylie Walleye Foundation said this is the 24th year for the celebration and they needed to mark it with something special.
"We wanted to give everybody, the community, something to laugh with," said Kristina Willoughby. "It's something new. It's not something we've tried before and all we can do is try. And if it flops, well Wylie the fish likes to flop anyway."
Willoughby said already they've gotten a great response from their Facebook page. Viewers can also purchase raffle tickets on the foundation's website and winners will be announced during the live broadcast. The streaming begins tonight at 9 p.m.
"The pandemic, it's shed a light on so many different things and new avenues to take and really honestly in a way brought the community closer together even though we're far apart," Willoughby added.
Also going virtual this year is the annual Popcorn Drop in Chagrin Falls. The owner of the Chagrin Falls Popcorn Shop said the 8th annual event is taking place at a private location with a limited number of people but it will be streamed live on Facebook starting at 11:40 p.m. The feed will also feature previous events.
"There's also a retrospect of popcorn drop past. We got one from every year, 2014, 15, 16, and the things that went on," said Dewey Forward. "We started out with a ball that was about 60 pounds. Last year it grew. We gave it a name: Hugh Mungus. It was almost 240 pounds."