Flagstaff's pinecone drop, fireworks canceled for a second year due to COVID

Fireworks displays have also been canceled
Posted at 6:54 PM, Dec 29, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-30 17:09:55-05

FLAGSTAFF, AZ — A celebration that many were waiting for filled with winter weather and excitement in Flagstaff has been canceled for the second year in a row.

The Weatherford Hotel announced Wednesday night the 2021-2022 Great Pinecone Drop event on New Year's Eve has been canceled due to the recent rising spread of the omicron variant of COVID-19, as well as staffing shortages.

The hotel released the following statement:

“We are completely devastated to be putting this event on pause as our staff and management team have been looking forward to hosting this event and ringing in 2022 together, but it is necessary to keep the community of Flagstaff, all visitors, and hotel staff’s health and safety a priority.”

“We are devastated to make this tough call as we wanted nothing more than to bring back the great tradition and will be ready to welcome you all back to the downtown in [2022-2023]. We wish you all a safe and happy New Year."

In Flagstaff, thousands of travelers typically gather in front of The Weatherford Hotel to watch the pinecone drop and ring in the new year.

Last year, the pinecone drop was held virtually due to the pandemic. So far no virtual event has been announced for this year's event.

The City of Flagstaff announced Thursday morning that city-sponsored New Year's Eve fireworks events, set to be held at 10 p.m. and midnight, have also been canceled. The city said the decision was "due to the cancellation of the Pinecone Drop."

There are several other New Year's celebrations across the Valley and state that have not been canceled as of Thursday. However, rain in the forecast has forced some changes, including a venue change for the NYE block party originally set to take place at Margaret T. Hance Park in Phoenix.