Casting for a Happy New Year: Walleye Drop returns to downtown Port Clinton

Nov 28, 2023 | Entertainment | 0 comments

Wylie Walleye will drop from the sky to ring in the New Year at Walleye Drop 2024. (Photo by Sheri Trusty)

BY SHERI TRUSTY

Thanks to a small but dedicated troupe of volunteers that make up the Wylie Walleye Foundation, thousands of people will travel to downtown Port Clinton on Sunday, Dec. 31 for the 2024 New Year’s Eve Walleye Drop. The family-friendly event is a much-anticipated tradition in the city.

Walleye Drop 2024 is presented by Bassett’s Market, Crown Battery, the Wylie Walleye Foundation and many other generous sponsors. Bassett’s Market is sponsoring the event as part of its 125th anniversary celebrations.

“The event is made possible by our generous donors who make both monetary and in-kind donations,” said Wylie Walleye Foundation Chairman Julie Natoli.

The event will kick off with a Touch-a-Truck event from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. in downtown Port Clinton, and the Minnow Drop for kids will begin at 4 p.m. at the Knights of Columbus at 109 E. Perry St. in Port Clinton. The Minnow Drop will feature free games, face painting, hot dogs, snacks and beverages. The Minnow will drop at 7 p.m.

Thousands of people will celebrate the New Year in Port Clinton thanks to a small group of volunteer organizers and many generous donors. (Photo by Sheri Trusty)

The main Walleye Drop activities will begin at 4 p.m. in downtown Port Clinton. The event will feature live music, vendors, ice sculpting, a photo booth and face painting. New this year, heated domes will provide space to get warm, and Diamond Waterfronts will offer free coffee and hot chocolate in another heated area. Port Clinton Fish Company will sell fish sandwiches inside their shop at 2 Madison St.

The annual Bar Swim returns to the Walleye Drop this year. SWIG Ohio Shuttles will offer free rides to bars throughout Port Clinton and the peninsula. Pickup for the buses is the parking lot adjacent to the Gristmill at 4 Monroe St.

“They generously donated the use of their parking lot for this,” Natoli said.

Thanks to sponsorship by Clemons Boats, the Walleye Drop 2024 will be live streamed by Buckeye Drone.

Wylie Walleye isn’t just hanging around waiting for the Walleye Drop to begin. He will take part in the Lighted Christmas Parade on Saturday, Dec. 2 at 5:30 p.m., and he can be seen at 13abc’s 13th annual Hope for the Holidays Toy Drive on Friday, Dec. 8, 6 a.m. to 6:30 p.m., at the Salvation Army Service Center at 1834 E. Perry St. in Port Clinton.

For more information on Walleye Drop 2024, including information on donating to the event or purchasing merchandise, can found at www.wyliewalleyefoundation.com or by emailing WylieWalleyeFoundation@gmail.com.

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