Pembroke gets jump on 2015

First Posted: 12/31/2014

Pembroke residents got a head start on 2015, celebrating the arrival of the new year a bit early on Wednesday as they gathered for music, food, and watched a lighted pinecone descend to the ground.

“It’s one of the best events in Pembroke and a great way to bring in the new year,” said Douglas Hunt, a Pembroke resident. “I always enjoy the friendly atmosphere and interacting with people in the community.”

For the second year, the Pembroke Chamber of Commerce hosted the Rockin’ Da ‘Broke Pinecone Drop at the Pembroke Recreational Complex, an event that featured food vendors, live entertainment and activities for children.

Onlookers watched as the Pembroke Rural Fire Department used one of its trucks to drop a 6-foot lighted pinecone, which signified the countdown to a new year. After a delay because of technical difficulties, the pinecone finally lit up shortly after 9 p.m. and it began it descent as people snapped photos.

The drop was held hours before midnight in keeping with a family theme.

“It’s something different and we really enjoy it,” said Natasha Jones, who was joined by her husband Brian, son Jacob, and daughter Megan. “It’s a new way to celebrate the new year.”

For Megan Jones, a senior at North Carolina State Univeristy, the event offered a chance to spend some “much needed” time with family.

“I enjoy the times like these since I’m always away at school,” she said. “Tonight was fun and I’m glad to be here with my family.”

Seven-year-old Jayden Allen said his favorite part of the night was watching the pinecone be lowered by the fire truck.

“I think it was pretty good,” he said. “It’s cool to watch that.”

Other events in Robeson County included a Rockin’ New Year’s Eve Celebration in downtown Lumberton sponsored by PNC Bank.

During the celebration, the Blackwater Rhythm and Blues Band, a group that specializes in beach, blues and funk music, performed.

“I love the music and being able to enjoy myself,” said Lisa Smith, a Lumberton resident. “I’m hoping 2015 will be prosperous for me and my family.”

For Greg Priest, who lives inClarkton, it was the first time experiencing a New Year’s Eve Celebration in Robeson County.

“We know the band very well and we enjoy being at this event with Robeson County folks for the first time,” said Priest, who was joined by his wife of 20 years, Sandra. “2014 was good to us and we look forward to this new year and new opportunities along the way.”