No real muskrats will be harmed in the New Year's ceremony, we are told.
A Maryland town that began a tradition last year of marking the new year by dropping a stuffed muskrat, not a ball, says the creature has a new outfit for this year's party plunge.
Marshall P. Muskrat will ring in the new year in downtown Princess Anne, Md., wearing a new cape, top hat and cane. Last year was the first year officials lowered the stuffed muskrat from the top of a ladder truck as part of celebrations.
Muskrats inhabit local marshes near the town, so officials decided it would be an appropriate animal for the job. The hardest part was finding one. Officials were finally able to borrow the mounted and preserved muskrat from the Maryland Department of Natural Resources.
Last year's event drew about 300 people.