ball drop

Courtesy: Dewey Business Partnership 

SUSSEX COUNTY, Del. - Many coastal events being held to ring in the New Year also give back to local causes. 

Anchor down in Lewes with the Overfalls Foundation for a New Year's anchor drop celebration that kicks off at 11:45 p.m. Saturday in CanalFront Park.

When the clock strikes midnight on January 1st, 2023 a Rehoboth Beach Volunteer Fire Company will drop a disco ball above New Orleans street as the celebrations begin. Dewey Business Partnership Executive Director Kelly Ranieri says the 12th annual party for all ages begins at 11:30 p.m. on New Year's Eve.

"Kick off the new year with confetti cannons," Ranieri says. "We'll have noise makers for everybody who is watching and we usually dance in the street until like 12:30."

On New Year's Day wash away the old or cure the night before. There are several events happening for swimmers to run into the wintry waters.

The Dewey Dunk is the Dewey Business Partnership's biggest fundraiser of the year. The party starts at 11:30 a.m. Sunday on Dagsworthy Street. The dunk happens at noon. Ranieri says there will be a bonfire, hot chocolate and adult beverages afterwards. 

Meanwhile Atlantic General Hospital's 29th Annual Penguin Swim takes place in front of the Princess Royale Oceanfront Hotel.

The Bethany Fenwick Chamber of Commerce and the Bethany Boat House will join forces for the 2023 Leo Brady New Year's Day Plunge that gives back to local students. Chamber Executive Director and Event Coordinator Lauren Weaver says participants will meet on the beach at Garfield Parkway to run into the water at noon.

"The committee began the plunge to raise money for the William O. Murray scholarship, which provides a 4 year scholarship every 4 years to one of our local high school students," Weaver says.

You can also keep your feet in the sand for another clean start to 2023. Coast Keeper Gabby Ross says the Assateague Coastal Trust Beach Memorial Walk was started as a way to honor the Year of the Coast, which President Jimmy Carter enacted in 1980. Organizers say bags and buckets will be provided for a 10 a.m. beach cleanup on New Year's Day, but bring your re-usable mugs for hot chocolate.

"We turn off our phones, we get away from the media, and we walk and just enjoy the preserved island that our founders originally got together and fought for back in the 70's and 80's," Ross says.

Or take your first hike of the year in a park in the first state. Check in with staff before embarking on a moderate 2 mile self-guided tour in Cape Henlopen or an easy paved mile in the Delaware Seashore State Park. Click here for more Delaware State Parks participating in First Day Hikes.

Recommended for you