Drag Queen and Pirate Wench Ring in 2009

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The traditional “ball drop” is so last year (and the year before that, and the year before that). But head to the Florida Keys and you’re bound to ring in the New Year as only the Keys can.

Yes, you will undoubtedly enjoy balmy temperatures and beachside fireworks. But it’s their unique version of Times Square’s ball drop that you’ll remember every year around New Year’s Eve.

At one location, people are expected to ring in the New Year by watching a gigantic manmade conch shell, the symbol of the Florida Keys, descend from the skies to the roof of Sloppy Joe’s Bar.

A few blocks away, a lavishly costumed female impersonator named Sushi will descend seconds before midnight in a super-sized red high heel suspended above the crowd.

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In Key West’s Historic Seaport, just before midnight, a pirate wench will begin her descent from the top of the mast of a stately tall ship. There’s even festivities for pets.

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I vote for dropping the ball. Give me the Keys, please.


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