Have a safe and happy start to 2013

It's hardly Times Square, or even Baltimore or Annapolis, for that matter, at least when it comes to the size of the crowds ringing in the new year in those cities, but it has become a tradition nearly as strong for the 500 to 1,000 people (depending on the weather) who turn out for the annual Havre de Grace New Year's Eve Duck Drop.

In some ways, the Havre de Grace event has a certain purity that gives it an edge over the more boisterous celebrations. There won't be any champagne toasts, but hot chocolate and cookies will be served. There's no associated restaurant promotion, though a meal earlier in the evening downtown will certainly be on the breaths of a few people in the crowd.

And the event isn't a money maker for the members of the Susquehanna Hose Company, who have seen fit to take up the tradition as their responsibility. This year, any money raised will go to the Susan G. Komen breast cancer fighting organization. Fittingly, the duck will be lighted in pink.

One of the few things the Havre de Grace celebration shares with other festivities ringing in the New Year will be fireworks, though they'll not be as spectacular as the city's Fourth of July display.

Whether you choose to duck into the new year in Havre de Grace this year, or you have some other plans in mind, have a safe celebration, and a happy start to 2013.

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