I am not proud to admit this but I am still wondering what to do for New Year’s Eve. Typically I go to various private parties for New Year’s in order to avoid the overhyped and overpriced headache that is New Year’s Eve, aka “amateur night.” Who wants to spend $60 a head to get cold appetizers and a cheap “champagne” toast with a bunch of strangers?
But for various reasons the parties are not happening this year and I admit that I am not immune to the glamour and promise of New Year’s Eve, no matter how cynical I sound. So I am trying to decide between staying home and ringing in the new year from the comfort and safety of my couch or else braving the crowds to look for community and conviviality to begin 2013. I am still making up my mind but here are a few events that look like they’d be worth the price of admission.
Know Theater’s 7th annual NYE Speakeasy Party: I am sucker for themed parties and vintage cocktails so this sounds like a really good time to me. Room games, appetizers, a DJ and two bars serving martinis, sidecars, and my personal favorite, Manhattans. And for $15 in advance it seems like a pretty reasonable price and even if you have a miserable time you know the money is going to support local theater.
Japp’s: If you want a wider variety of cocktails to go with your vintage cocktail dress Japp’s in Over the Rhine is hosting their first annual NYE Party and Olive Drop. You can dance to DJ Tanner and Keith Jones and the Makeshifts, get your picture taken in the Retrocentric photo booth (I have no idea what that means) and of course enjoy both classic and original cocktails made by people who know the difference between a martini and a gibson. VIP packages are available if you want to pay $25 for a bottle of champagne and some party hats.
Arnold’s NYE with the Dancing Pigs: If you are more of a beer and burger person you can still have a classy and fun NYE with Cincinnati’s oldest bar. Dinner, music by the Dancing Pigs, champagne toast as well as coffee and beignets after midnight can all be yours for $15.
The Cabaret: If dancing and fabulousness are more important to you on NYE than the quality of you cocktail or beer than I would recommend Cincinnati’s best (and let’s face it, only) drag cabaret show bar. I’ve been for a fundraiser and it was a blast. The performers are great, the music is all about dancing and fun and the drinks are reasonable. Music by DJ Syimone, a free photo booth and best of all, no cover.
Of course there is also one very important option left, and it’s probably the one I will end up taking if I go out. It’s all well and good to go out and look for something new, fun and different to do on New Year’s Eve but if you have found a local bar you are happy with, where the staff know you and the regulars are friendly there is no reason to look any further for the big night. After all New Year’s Eve is all about starting the new year in a way that reflects how you hope to spend the coming year. Friends you can have a laugh with, someone you are happy to kiss at midnight, and a few good drinks are all most of us really want for the New Year. Here’s hoping that you find it.