Preparations were underway Tuesday for the annual New Year’s celebration at Miami’s Bayfront Park. NBC 6’s Christina Hernandez reports.
The Miami skyline is taking on a whole new look for one night – as it does every New Year’s Eve.
Once a year, La Gran Naranja, or the Big Orange, rises to the top of the InterContinental Miami hotel when the clock strikes midnight. In the hours before it does, it’s a party at Bayfront Park.
“The activities are fun. Everybody is beautiful, the beautiful people,” said Janelle Smalls, who was celebrating downtown Tuesday night. “It's just a ray of sunshine.”
Vendors were selling funnel cakes and New Year’s gear that included 2014 glasses.
But the star of the show was again the iconic fruity sign that rises up the InterContinental every New Year’s.
“It's 35 feet tall. It has about 2,000 feet of neon on it. It has a few thousand LEDs,” said Steve Carpenter, who works on the Big Orange.
It’s so big, its annual trip to Bayfront isn’t easy.
“You have to go under bridges and overpasses and I couldn't make it in two pieces because it's too big, so I had to make it in four pieces and then we bring it out and assemble it and pick it up with a crane,” Carpenter said.