Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Gearing Up for New Year's

The holidays do not end on December 26th. There is an entire week more of celebratory events that culminates in the ushering in of a New Year. This is an ideal week to entertain, visit with friends, make play dates for your children who are probably off of school, and to plan a fun way to ring in the New Year. Not nearly as formal in tone as Christmas, New Year's is like the rock star of winter celebrations. A mix of revelry, sparkly dress code, and no-holds-bar fun, New Year's has the potential to be the highlight of the holiday season. End your season with a bang and host, attend, or observe New Year's Eve with a bang this year!
Having people in is a great way to spend New Year's Eve. A simple menu of appetizers, with your guests each bringing one of their own favorites, is a fun way to do this party. Dips, finger foods, hot and cold assortments, a cheese platter, and punch are great spread ideas, leave little stress for the host when it comes to timing a meal accordingly. And don't forget to put out the last of the Christmas cookies for dessert. Once the New Year begins you'll want those out of your house and diet! Have on hand New Year's Eve hats and tiaras found in party or discount stores as well as noise makers(enough for everyone). Make and play a playlist of your most upbeat and fun songs as the background music, reminisce about 2010 and you all prepare to put it in your past, and then look forward to the optimism a New Year brings. If you are marking the occasion with children, plan to countdown to the New Year on whatever hour is reasonable - if midnight is too late (for ALL of you) try 9p, or even 7p! What matters is making the event memorable and fun for everyone in attendance. It's midnight somewhere in the world so countdown when it is convenient! And, I recommend NOT serving alcohol at your party - this is Amateur Night on the roads. People drink and drive and many get injured or killed behind the wheel. Stay sober, stay safe, and send your guests home to enjoy a New Year.
There are many ways to celebrate New Year's Eve that don't include alcohol. Many towns and cities around the country offer a First Night event. According to Teresa Plowright who writes at About.com Guide:

"First Night" events celebrate New Year's Eve with family-friendly non-alcohol-imbibing festivities-- and as if that weren't good enough, they're low-cost, too.
The idea dates back as far as 1976: Boston pioneered a First Night Celebration as "an alternative way of ushering in the New Year." In Boston, and many cities since, the focus is on community and on performing arts. Here's Boston's Mission Statement:
First Night's mission is to broaden and deepen the public's appreciation of the visual and performing arts through an innovative, diverse and high quality New Year's Eve program which offers the community a shared cultural experience that is accessible and affordable to all.
What this translates into is low-cost, high-quality fun. My memory of a First Night in Vancouver, BC is of friendly crowds (beer-bottle-free), plenty of kids in strollers, and excellent short performances of drumming, dance, and more, at multiple venues within walking distance, and at minimal admission cost.
Nowadays, hundreds of cities worldwide celebrate First Night, and in many cases the celebration is a day-long event.

If ringing in the New Year means drinking champagne, dressing up, or staying in with your mate, then by all means get out your Champagne flutes! As long as driving is not a part of your itinerary, enjoy! A lot of hotels hold fun, fancy, and expensive parties that include a room to "sleep it off" after the New Year has begun. Or you can simply stay home to toast one another at midnight and head to bed - what a  better way to ring in the New Year?
Whatever way you choose to observe New Year's this year, please be safe, have fun, make your resolutions for good health, better living, stronger loving, and make a pact to make Chief 187 Chatter a part of your daily rituals. There is so much I'm eager to share with you all and am anxious to get started!

1 comment:

  1. I think I'll be snoozing into the new year. May just have to work. Guess this is a good thing....=)