re: I just want to get to the point because it’s important: After you watch the Ball drop in Times Square, know that NYC is boring on New Years Day, everything is closed – Come to Philly and see the 6 hr Mummers Parade, with music, feathers and fun. It’s only 1.5hrs away. OK now here’s the story.

There’s no doubt NYC is a great place to see experience Christmas, Radio City Christmas Show (I really took this picture, standing in the back resting my camera on the ledge) And who doesn’t want to see the Ball drop in Times Square. But you only need to do it once, because then you’d know it’s not all that. There are no bathrooms, no food, and you are not allowed to leave your section, and if you do, you are not allowed back in it, and well it’s crazy times too, and crowded, and people complain constantly because they can’t leave. When I lived in NYC (2005 -2007) I would occasionally see advertisements for the sleepover campaign around the City, even in Times Square (the one below is at 8th/24th near my old apt). At that time I wrote someone in the Phila tourism department and told them that they needed to advertise the Mummers parade and partner with Amtrak because New Year’s Day in NYC is BORING (I’ve told some folks since, but the only Philly ad I have seen in Times Square lately is this one)The day after New Year Eve, the Broadway shows stay on their same schedule, and this year that means no matinee just 8PM shows, there is no parade, the department stores are closed and the only ritual I saw was going to the movies, which are usually sold out.

So after you see the Ball drop in NYC, jump on Amtrak or the Bolt Bus and get yourself down to Philly to see the Mummer’s Parade on New Year Day.
come for the History, and the music
the comedy, feathers and smilesfor the whole family Mummers in Philly Many people describe it as similar to the costumes of New Orleans Mardi Gras parade, but it’s not as wild, no flashing going on, just layers of clothing and hot chocolate.

New Year’s Eve is a whole lotta fun too. There’s the Penns Landing Fireworks, where there is ice skating, music and of course the big show at Midnight. (Thanks to the sponsorship from the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation, Penn’s Landing Corporation and private corporate sponsors PRWT Services, Inc., the Hyatt Regency Philadelphia and the Moshulu) (This is the view from my house, but your view down on Penns Landing will be much better)And for those of you over 21 looking for something to do, there are plenty of parties going on:

2009 City Gala at the Bellevue
The tag line states: the most elegant, ultra-exclusive, high profile New Year’s Eve Dance Party in the entire Philadelphia region. It is truly in a class of its own. “A real TOUCH OF CLASS New Year’s Eve Dance Party that keeps it young and fun.” Join us to say goodbye to 2008 and ring in 2009 in STYLE! This party is sure to be fabulous. We look forward to spending New Year’s Eve with you and all your friends.

Then there’s a whole lotta choices, with break downs of ages & dress code found here:

And of course plenty of restaurants to ring in the New Year, including one of my favorite spots:

The Waterworks Restaurant where there are two sittings 6PM & 9PM
Farewell to 2008: Six O’clock, $100 ~ Six Course Prix Fixe Menu
Ringing in 2009: Nine O’clock, $150 ~ Six Course Prix Fixe Menu which then includes a cocktail party and entertainment, a midnight toast and dessert bar.
Respondez s’il vous plait 215.236.9000

Then there’s the Rum Bar
Rum Bar patrons will ring in 2009 from 9pm-1am while enjoying a complete top shelf open bar, Caribbean dinner buffet, a Champagne toast at midnight, fun party favors and dancing with Rum Bar’s preferred house mixer master — DJ Natev. The all-inclusive admission is just $80 per person, which even covers tax and gratuity. And who knows, maybe Rum Bar owner Adam Kanter will even do a few of his famous fireballs throughout the night. located at 2005 Walnut St., 215-751-0404