Downtown Countdown


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Ring in 2017 at the Fort Lauderdale Orange Bowl
Downtown Countdown New Year’s Eve Celebration!

Midnight Countdown to Feature Illuminated Anchor

Fort Lauderdale - The City of Fort Lauderdale is gearing up for the Fort Lauderdale Orange Bowl Downtown Countdown, the annual premier New Year’s Eve celebration. Touted as one of the largest New Year’s Eve celebrations in Florida, this year’s free street festival is full of fun and excitement for both children and adults. Revelers will crowd downtown Fort Lauderdale on Saturday, December 31 from 3:30 p.m. to 1 a.m. along S.W. 2nd Street between S.W. 2nd and S.W. 5th Avenues to wait with anticipation for the midnight countdown.

This year’s midnight countdown will feature Fort Lauderdale’s larger-than-life illuminated anchor. The anchor, which debuted last year, will descend down from 100 feet in the air above the event’s main stage as the final seconds of 2016 tick down and we usher in the New Year.

The anchor measures 20 feet high and 17 feet wide. It weighs more than 700 pounds and features close to 12,000 LED lights. It is made of a steel framework with a grey mesh covering and is illuminated with lights positioned inside the frame. The anchor’s color-changing LED lights have a wide range of features and effects which will create a spectacular visual display for event-goers.

Downtown Countdown will feature a variety of activities for the whole family from 3:30 to 8:30 p.m. including bounce houses, slides, face painting, games, contests, line dancing with DJ William Pennhouse, and free caricatures drawn by a team of talented sketch artists!  Make sure to have your cameras ready to snap a selfie with special guest OBIE, the Orange Bowl Mascot, from 6 to 8 p.m.

The Kids Countdown takes place at 7 p.m. on the main stage at S.W. 2 Street and S.W. 5 Avenue, and will feature the lighting of the anchor. Once the anchor is illuminated, it will remain on, showcasing a variety of colors and effects until the countdown at midnight.

At 8 p.m., live music kicks off on the main stage (S.W. 2 Street and S.W. 5 Avenue) with Crystal Dreams of Fleetwood Mac. Just when you thought you've danced until you dropped, get ready for South Florida's Funk Top 40 Band, Pocket Change, who take over the main stage from 9:30 p.m. to 1 a.m. Pocket Change is a funk, R&B, soul, motown, dance, and party band known best for its showmanship and hard-driving rhythms.

Event Highlights

3:30 to 8:30 p.m. -- Family Fun Zone

  • 3:30 to 8:30 p.m.  Inflatables, face painting, DJ with music, games & contests
  • 6:00 to 8:00 p.m.  Special appearance by OBIE, the Orange Bowl Mascot
  • 7:00 to 7:30 p.m.  Line dancing

7:00 p.m. -- Kids Countdown to illuminate anchor

8:00 p.m. -- Live music on the main stage

  • 8:00 to 9:00 p.m. – Crystal Dreams of Fleetwood Mac
  • 9:30 p.m. to 1:00 a.m. – Pocket Change

T minus 15 minutes (11:45 p.m.): Find last minute ball drop watch positions
Revelers should make their way toward the main stage for the midnight ball drop – it will be elbow room only.

T minus 1 minute 10 seconds (11:58:50 p.m.): Countdown begins
City officials will count down the final seconds of 2016 out and usher in 2017 as the Downtown Countdown illuminated Anchor descends from the sky.

Midnight: Welcome 2017!
A five-minute pyrotechnic display will brilliantly illuminate the sky above Downtown Fort Lauderdale. Bursts of custom-mixed colors light up the night sky as confetti descends on partygoers. And the band plays on…


Below is a list of parking locations in downtown Fort Lauderdale conveniently located near the event site.

City Park Garage
150 SE 2nd Street

Broward Governmental Garage
151 SW 2nd Street

County Lot II
100 SW 1st Avenue

Riverfront Garage
305 S Andrews Avenue

Riverhouse Lot
220 SW 3rd Avenue

200 Las Olas Circle Garage
200 SW 1st Avenue

Downtown Countdown Parking


Beginning Friday, December 30, 2016 at 7 a.m., the following traffic restrictions will be in place:
(1) SW 2nd Street will be closed from SW 5th east to SW 4th Avenue;
(2) SW 4th Avenue will be closed from SW 2nd Street south to the New River.

In addition, beginning Saturday, December 31, 2016 at 7 a.m. the following additional traffic restrictions will be in place:

(1) SW 2nd Street will be closed from SW 7th East to SW 1st Avenue;
(2) Eastbound SW 2nd Street from SW 7th Avenue to SW 5th Avenue will be restricted to Broward Center for Performing Arts employees and VIP/valet customers only with no parking garage access;
(3) SW 2nd Avenue will be closed south of Broward Boulevard;
(4) Access to SW 3rd and SW 4th Avenues south of Broward Boulevard will be restricted to residents who live in the area and employees of businesses on those streets;
(5) SW 5th Avenue will be closed south of the parking garage entrance. Roads will reopen at 8 a.m. on Sunday, January 1.


There will be two designated pick up/drop off areas for Taxi cabs, Uber, and Lyft vehicles:
(1) SW 5th Avenue south of Broward Boulevard; and
(2) SW 1 Avenue south of Broward Boulevard.
Any other locations used for pick up/drop off will be strictly prohibited and citations will be issued. The designated areas are for Broward County permitted Taxi cabs, Uber and Lyft vehicles only.  All other transportation services are prohibited.

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The City of Fort Lauderdale Orange Bowl Downtown Countdown is sponsored by Corona Light, Flex Seal, Florida Prepaid, MetroPCS, Sunshine Health, and Tarpon Bend.