A New Year’s delivery

Pictured are Justin and Britney Schmidt with their New Year’s baby, Sonny.

While many in the community enjoyed holiday festivities New Year’s weekend, two downtown Waterloo business owners had a truly exceptional start to the year as they welcomed the first baby born in St. Louis in 2024.

Britney and Justin Schmidt, owners of The Bear & The Bird and Vintage Wine Bar on Main Street in Waterloo, gave birth to Sonny West Schmidt at 12:03 a.m. Monday, Jan. 1.

Britney made the announcement via Facebook, posting that “everyone is happy and healthy.” Sonny weighed 8 pounds, 5 ounces at birth.

After returning home from the hospital, Justin offered his thoughts on the experience with the Republic-Times.

He said they had made their way to Missouri Baptist Medical Center in St. Louis at about 1 p.m. on Dec. 31. With the end of the year approaching over the course of several hours, Justin recalled how many of those around them were chatting and betting about whether the delivery would happen before or after midnight.

“We were getting closer and closer,” Justin said. “When the baby was born, I had just totally forgotten about the time, and then once my son was born, I asked the nurse ‘What time was it?’ She said 12:03. Then she ran outside and came back in all excited. ‘Oh I just talked to my supervisor, and you guys are the first baby that was born in St. Louis this year!’ They were more excited about it than we were, actually.”

While Justin and Britney weren’t exactly focused on the clock in the moment, Justin did say that this was something they had discussed over the last month as Sonny’s birth approached.

“We kinda joked around about it a few weeks ago,” Justin said. “‘Oh, what if it’s the first baby of the year,’ because her due date was the fifth, but we figured she was gonna go a little earlier. So we did joke around about it, but I didn’t think that it was actually gonna end up that way.”

Justin noted that, though having a New Year’s baby makes for a good story, he and Britney are far happier about Sonny’s overall good health.

He also explained that the name Sonny was simply one Britney had come across previously. It grew on him as well, and they’re pleased to be able to give their new son a relatively uncommon name.

According to UNICEF, an estimated 10,312 babies are born in the United States on New Year’s Day. American babies typically account for nearly 3 percent of the estimated 371,504 babies to be born across the globe on New Year’s Day.

According to USA Today, the rarest birthday of the 365 annual calendar days is Christmas Day, Dec. 25. If your birthday is New Year’s Day or Christmas Eve, you also have uncommon birthdays. 

Jan. 1 and Dec. 24 are just below Christmas on the list.

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Andrew Unverferth

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