“When the bells all ring and the horns all blow,” as the indomitable Ella Fitzgerald asked, what are you doing New Year’s Eve? If the answer is ‘Turning on the TV at 11:45 and feeling sad that Ryan Seacrest isn’t Dick Clark,’ then we not only feel your pain, but we want to help you find a far more interesting way to spend your eve. Here are a few choice selections for Westchester venues that — we hope — should satisfy most every taste and style.
Kid-Friendly Daytime Events
At the Kensico Dam in Valhalla, Westchester’s Winter Wonderland will blow out their holiday season with a special celebration of the end of the year featuring activities, attractions, fireworks, and an 8 p.m. ball drop. Tickets start at just $15 (though kids under 3 get in free), and 20+ group rates are available. Plenty of time to get in some family revelry and put the kids to sleep before starting your own adult party shenanigans.
New Roc City in New Rochelle is also hosting their 8th Annual “Ring in the New Year at Noon” on the 31st from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. The daytime celebration will include activities and giveaways, culminating in a huge balloon drop at noon. Tickets are $5 per person or $10 per family of four, with funds being donated to the Westchester Children’s Museum.
Bowlmor White Plains is also offering a family package on December 31 and January 1 for two hours of bowling (shoes included!), a kid-approved buffet (think: chicken fingers, pizza, french fries, etc.) and sparkling cider/champagne toasts!
Did we mention that Bowlmor is also doing an evening package for adults? No? Yeah, maybe scroll back up and click that link again. The adult version of events runs for four hours starting at 9 p.m. on New Year’s Eve — shoes, and cider/champagne toast still included — but boasts a more gourmet buffet.
Over in Tarrytown, meanwhile, The Oath Craft Beer Sanctuary is hosting its own New Year’s Eve Bash, defying all known logic and offering open bar on all 20 draft beers, select bottles and cans, and liquor/wine specials. There will also be h’ors doeuvres, mains, desserts, two separate bands, and a midnight toast with complimentary champagne. The Bash runs 9 p.m. to 2 a.m. and is strictly 21-and-over. Tickets are $100.
Back in White Plains, the city will be hosting its 17th Annual New Year’s Eve Spectacular stating at 10 p.m. at Main Street and Court Street. Live music and a DJ will provide the soundtrack to a festive evening filled with confetti, a ball drop, and midnight fireworks! It’s a great party, and adjacent to White Plains’ many bars and clubs if you’re in the mood for a more upscale/indoor environment.
If you’re worried about getting home after, though, don’t fret: Heineken, proud owners of a gorgeous White Plains headquarters, will for the fourteenth year offer their “New Year. Safe Ride.” program to any revelers in White Plains’ downtown area. From 11 p.m. until 3 a.m. a fleet of 30 cars (including at least one that is handicap-accessible) will offer free rides home to anywhere in Westchester. Remember how great it was to get Uber over the summer? Yeah, it’s like that, except you can just go straight to the Safe Rides stand on the corner of East Post Road and Mamaroneck Avenue.
If heading out into the teaming throngs isn’t quite your style, White Plains still has you covered. Grab your Snuggie and head over to the Cinema de Lux where just $20.18 buys you your choice of movie (yes, even Star Wars: The Last Jedi!) timed perfectly to end with just enough time to watch the ball drop on the big screen. The whole experience comes with a champagne toast and even a dessert reception, so it’s basically the classiest version of watching a moving with wine and ice cream that you could ever imagine. Sign us up.
First Day Hikes
Looking to kick off that resolution to be healthier and get more exercise? The State Parks Department will be organizing “First Day Hikes” at both Franklin D. Roosevelt State Park and the Old Croton Aqueduct. FDR will be about 2.5 miles setting out from the North end of the swimming pool parking lot at 10:30 a.m., while the aqueduct will be an easy 1-mile stroll leaving from the Croton Gorge Park rest area along Route 129 at noon. Call 914.245.4434 for details on the FDR hike, or for the Aqueduct hike call either Pete Dispensa at 914.522.5000 or Sara Kelsey at 914.725-1237.
Wherever you decide to celebrate the end of 2017 and the start of something new, please remember to be safe and kind to yourself and others.
Happy New Year!