Everyone rings in the new year differently. Some folks like the low-key drinks leading up to midnight, while others like to dress to the nines for multi-course meals and ballroom dancing; others want something in between, or simply free of charge.
As New Year’s Eve approaches, here are some events around town offering anything from glitz and glamour to laugh-out-loud entertainment.
Let us begin the countdown to 2019…
NYE Countdown Party at the Goat
Goat & Compass
710 N. 4th St.
For folks looking for a low-key countdown sans the hustle and bustle of downtown, Goat & Compass on North Fourth is celebrating the end of 2018 with half-off everything. No joke, all the beer and booze in the bar will be half price. There’s no cover to get in, party starts at 7 p.m. and there’s a champagne toast at midnight.
NYE with Rosebud Baker
Dead Crow Comedy Room
265 N. Front St.
Some of us need a good laugh after this year… Rosebud Baker might talk about “taking an emotional shit” which came with quitting drinking almost 10 years ago; signs of astrology; the competitive sport of meditating; or myriad of topics which helped make this New York-based comedian, actress and writer the “New Face” at the prestigious Montreal Just For Laughs Comedy Festival in 2018. Baker has an early show at 7 p.m. and later set at 9:30 p.m. Tickets are $17 at deadcrowcomedy.com.
“Any Shade” of Masquerade Party w/ Striking Copper
Waterline Brewing Co.
721 Surry St.
Whether looking to celebrate New Year’s Eve “in style” or not, Waterline’s “Any Shade of Masquerade” themed party is sure to be a throwdown. Featuring special menu items on site starting at 6 p.m., Wilmington’s Americana darlings of Striking Copper will take the stage at 9 p.m., and complimentary champagne (or beer) toast at midnight. Folks can get fancy and creative with their frocks or don complimentary masks (or not), while others can come in their best jeans and sunglasses. No cover.
New Year’s Eve Soirèe On The River
Embassy Suites by Hilton Wilmington Riverfront
9 Estell Lee Place
Sometimes it’s worth an extra dollar or three to ensure your last night and meal of the year is a special one. For couples looking to plan an evening away from home. Embassy Suites is offering a party package, so to speak, with their New Year’s Eve Soirèe On The River. The evening starts with a four-course dinner and open bar, dance party with Port City Shakedown, midnight champagne toast, overnight stay, valet parking and New Year’s Day breakfast for $549 per couple. Add an additional night’s stay for $99. Visit embassysuiteswilmington.com.
NYE with Onward, Soldiers
Featuring Driskill and Chris Frisina
127 Princess St.
Onward, Soldiers just started recording their next record and plan to play almost all their new tunes at their New Year’s Eve bash at Bourgie Nights. This also is the last chance to see Onward, Soldiers again until summer 2019. They’ll share the stage with Driskill, who just released a new song “Hopeless Romantic,” as well as Chris Frisina, who will play off of his latest album, “Fences,” which also features Onward’s Sean Thomas Gerard. Tickets are $10 in advance and $15 at the door.
5th Annual New Year’s Eve Gala
Beau Rivage Golf & Resort
649 Rivage Promenade
Another fun and fancy free evening (emphasis on the “fancy”) is happening at Beau Rivage’s annual New Year’s Eve Gala to benefit NHRMC Foundation. They’ve enlisted a DJ from Party Gras Entertainment to keep people dancing throughout the night, while Catering Thyme will keep them full until the ball drops. Heavy hors d’oeuvres will be butlered throughout the evening, and food stations scattered throughout the ballroom. Memories will be captured by their photo booth, while others might be lost with the liquor ice luge. Tickets are $75 per person and also include party favors, a cash bar, silent auction, prize raffles and a complimentary toast at midnight. Event tickets range from $75-$145 per person, with proceeds donated to NHRMC’s Rehabilitation Hospital. Find more details at beaurivagegolfonline.com.
New Year’s Eve Dinner
Sweet n Savory Cafe
1611 Pavilion Place
Sweet n Savory is serving up a formal four-course New Year’s Eve dinner to pair nicely with any other plans for NYE. This night of fine-dining includes the whole nine years—from fine tablecloths and linens, down to romantic candlelight and flowers—to complement any course combination you choose. Prices are based on a half-dozen main-course options, including but not limited to surf n turf ($48), two-day braised veal short rib ($42), half rack of lamb ($46) or eggplant rollatini ($36). Local musician Joshua Ward will play ambient music from 7 p.m. – 9 p.m. Reservations are required with seating times from 4:30 p.m. – 10 p.m. Diners who book tables at 5:30 p.m. or earlier, or 9 p.m. or later, get a $5 discount for per person. Regular menus will not be offered but they will have a limited children’s menu. See a full NYE dinner menu or make reservations at sweetnsavory.cafe/new-years-eve-dinner-menu.
NYE Dinner and Celebration
2508 Independence Blvd.
For a tasty way to end 2018 without the black-tie or ball gown, Henry’s is celebrating New Year’s Eve with live acoustic music from Josh Lewis from 7 p.m. – 10 p.m., party favors, bubbly toast at midnight, and of course, dinner. They’ll have their regular dinner menu available plus special New Year’s Eve features to come. They’re also taking care of hangovers the next morning with a New Year’s Day brunch featuring their Kickin’ Bloody Mary, and $12 plates of traditional good-luck plate of black-eyed peas and collard greens. Call 910-793-2929 for details or reservations.
U’Nique’s New Year’s Eve
The Terraces on Sir Tyler
1826 Sir Tyler Dr.
Endless cocktails. Catered dinner by Middle of the Island. Champagne toast. Packed dance floor? Sounds like a party! Specifically, it’s U’Nique’s New Year’s Eve Masquerade Ball at The Terraces on Sir Tyler. Highlights of the evening include Sonic Spectrum playing an eclectic mix of funk, rock, pop and souland and the person donning “Best Mask” will receive a prize. Presented by U’Nique Community Fund, 100 percent of all proceeds benefit their work with mental health awareness, suicide prevention and education in Wilmington. Tickets are $100 per person, or $950 for a table of 10. Note that tickets will not be available at the door. Visit www.uniquecommunityfund.org.
Ibiza’s New Year’s Eve Party
118 Market St.
Ibiza throws down like no other. So anyone looking to obliterate the dance floor on New Year’s Eve, this is the place to do it. Ibiza’s New Year’s Eve Party will have a small army of DJs, go-go dancers, $1,000 balloon drop, and—yes—complimentary champagne toast at midnight. It’s $20 to get into Ibiza’s biggest party of the year. Anyone who purchases their tickets online can skip the line with express entry until 11 p.m. Visit ibiza.ticketspice.com/nye-18.
New Year’s Noon
Children’s Museum of Wilmington
116 Orange St.
Not everyone needs, wants or can stay up until midnight—especially kiddos with a bedtime, which is why the Children’s Museum of Wilmington’s New Year’s Noon remains on our NYE roundup. Sub champagne with a juice toast to 2019 and replace “masquerade” mask with make-your-own party crown, and countdown the New Year with streamer sticks, glittery slime and confetti toss in the Children’s Museum courtyard. New Year’s Noon is included in regular admission ($9.75 per person) or is free for members.
Learn more at playwilmington.org.
New Year’s Eve Blueberry Drop
Historic Train Depot
115 S. Dickerson St., Burgaw
There are a couple of family friendly ways to celebrate New Year’s Eve, albeit a little earlier. The latest event rounding out our list this year is the first annual New Year’s Eve Blueberry Drop presented by the Town of Burgaw, Pender County and N.C. Blueberry Festival. CFCC’s Burgaw Center welding students constructed the “blueberry” frame, while dark blue fabric and lights will be added to the giant berry before showtime. Eagles tribute band Eaglewing will kick things off at 5 p.m. Two Komorebi fire arts demonstrations will take place at 5:45 p.m. and 6:35 p.m., before the official Blueberry drops from a 6-foot-high aerial platform over the Historic Train Depot at 7 p.m.
Visit the event Facebook page for more.
More New Year’s Eve events can be found on encore’s calendar, page 40, or at encorepub.com.