One of the region’s oldest New Year’s Eve celebrations began as 1980 rolled into 1981.
Prentice Tomas, a Yellow Springs resident, organized the Times Square, Yellow Springs Committee to provide a safe way for village residents to celebrate the new year together.
While the inaugural celebration didn’t have an official ball drop, The Dayton Daily News reported someone kicked a silver beach ball off the downtown movie theater marquee to mark the event.
As the remaining hours of 1982 rolled around, the event had become so popular 1,000 people filled the streets.
A photograph of a tall, dark and mustached man dressed as Baby New Year was a highlight of the celebration.
Wearing a Happy New Year crown on his head, a 1983 sash across his chest and a diaper pinned around his waist, the reveler was cheered as he stood above the crowd.
Hats and fists were raised in the air as a sparkling ball was lowered from a tree trimming ladder truck during the last moments of 1982.
“It’s going to be a bumper year,” proclaimed the Baby New Year, as hundreds of balloons and confetti flew and champagne corks popped.
The annual ball drop celebration continues this year in front of the Little Art Theatre, 247 Xenia Ave.
WANT TO GO?
What: Yellow Springs Ball Drop
Where: Xenia Avenue and Short Street
When: Midnight on Dec. 31. Streets close at 11:30 p.m. and will reopen at 1 a.m.
Cost: $25 per person