Updated at 8:50 a.m. Thursday
Atlanta’s traditional Peach Drop on New Year’s Eve has been temporarily suspended, leaving thousands of revelers searching for alternatives and others with nostalgia for its iconic man-made fruit.
On Monday, Fulton County officials had comforting words for fans of the Peach Drop: It will be back.
Standing before the glowing, 525 -pound fiberglass Peach that has crowned Atlanta’s public New Year’s Eve celebrations for 30 years, Fulton County Board Commissioner Robb Pitts showed his resolve in bringing it back.
“If we have anything to do with it, I can unequivocally say there will be a Peach Drop next year,” Pitt said.
He said Fulton County is seeking partnerships with the private sector and nonprofits to help finance the return of the Peach Drop as attendants took to social media in protest and nostalgia for the temporarily forbidden fruit.
“When the decision was made to host the annual New Year’s celebration, affectionally known as the Peach Drop, my phone began to ring off the hook,” he said.
For now, he said, fans are welcome to visit the Peach in the atrium of the Fulton County government building on Pryor on New Year’s Eve. The peach will be on display through the end of January.
The glowing monument will be there until its owner and creator, Steve Guy of WOW entertainment, brings it back home.
Guy created the peach in 1988 with a friend and said it has been through a few phases. The Peach began entertaining crowds at Six Flags in the late ’80s, rolling down a 225-foot tall ride called the Great Gasp.
“It was a much simpler time. The peach had a tendency not to work so it kept me scared all the time. And talk about global warming, it was so much colder back then it seemed,” he said. “Eventually we ended up with chain motors that were far more reliable.
“We have had a few scares along the way where you lose power. It’s always a bag of nerves until the peach drops.”