In December, Southern Crane lifted holiday spirits in downtown Raleigh, North Carolina, in the USA.
The company used its 190 US ton (172 metric ton) capacity crane to hoist chillers into place for the Winterfest ice rink. The large chillers were used to freeze the ice rink. Winterfest is a two-month festival featuring an outdoor skating rink with natural ice, a unique civic activity for a Southern city. Installing chillers is the most crucial part of constructing the 45-foot by 90-foot (14 x 27 meter) rink, especially given Raleigh's average December temperature is 54 degrees Fahrenheit (12 Celsius).
This type of civic project is what Earl Johnson, Southern Crane founder and president, loves to make happen for his hometown. "We're a family company celebrating our 50th anniversary here locally, and we love Christmas traditions," Johnson said. "It's fun to help create something that gives people so much enjoyment around the holidays."
Southern Crane also made history during Raleigh's annual Christmas Parade by being the first crane to participate. Parade bystanders saw the company's 100 ton (91 metric ton) crane decorated with a giant wreath, adorned with 75 feet of fresh pine garland and a Christmas tree mounted to the top of its boom.
On New Year's Eve, the company was set to help the city celebrate another of its long-standing traditions, lowering the city's iconic giant acorn at First Night Raleigh. The acorn sculpture is made of copper and steel and weighs 1,250 pounds (567 kg). Southern Crane has delighted New Year's revelers by lowering the acorn at the stroke of midnight every year since the inaugural First Night Raleigh held December 31, 1991.