Looking for some place to party on New Year’s Eve? Here are some of your best bets for ringing in the New Year around South Sound. Find more options on our Nightlife Calendar on B5:
Family friendly New Year’s
First Night Tacoma-Pierce County is a family-friendly, arts-centered, alcohol free celebration of New Year's Eve that takes place throughout Tacoma’s downtown theater district. The fun will kick off at 6 p.m. with the Last Mile Fun Run, followed by the World’s Shortest Parade, a participatory procession that's expected to include marching bands, puppets, roller derby bruisers and more starting at 6:15 p.m. Over the next few hours, revelers will enjoy dancers, magic and live music on 20 different stages. Among the biggest musical acts this year are popular gypsy jazz band, Pearl Django, rising Tacoma dance-pop outfit the Fame Riot and “The Voice” contestant Stephanie Anne Johnson. All of this will culminate in a pyrotechnic display, dubbed the Midnight Fire Spectacular, around 11:45 p.m.
For revelers ages 10 and older, First Night admission is $10 in advance and $14 the day of the event and free for children 9 years old and younger. See http://www.firstnighttacoma.org for a full schedule of activities.
Classic rock New Year’s
Rock anthems don’t come much bigger than “Born to Be Wild,” a rallying cry for bikers and flower children alike since it was immortalized in the 1968 cult film “Easy Rider.” It’s sure to be on the set list when John Kay and Steppenwolf take over the Emerald Queen Casino’s I-5 showroom, 2024 E. 29th St., in Tacoma. The Cronkites will warm the crowd up at 8:30 p.m. with the main attraction scheduled to go on at 11. Perhaps the best part of this one is that it’s free. You need to be 21 and older to pick up a bracelet to get in, though. Bracelets will be doled out at the base of the escalators that lead up to the showroom on a first come, first serve basis beginning at 4:30 p.m. There will be a limit of two per patron; http://www.emeraldqueen.com for further details.
Hilarious New Year’s
Tacoma’s most prominent comedy clubs are ringing in the New Year with some really big names. Award-winning comedian Paul Ogata will headline two big shows at 8 and 10:30 p.m. at Grit City Comedy Club, located inside the 502 Martini Bar & Lounge, at 100 S. 9th St., in Tacoma. You’ve got to be 21 or older to get in, and tickets are $15 per show; http://www.gritcitycomedyclub.com.
Meanwhile, Tacoma Comedy Club will have Alonzo Bodden, best known for taking top honors on the third season of NBC-TV’s “The Last Comic Standing” and for appearances on “The Adam Carolla Show” and NPR’s “Wait, Wait ... Don’t Tell Me!” Shows are scheduled for 8 and 10:30 p.m., with support provided by Cory Michaelis and host** Jubal Flagg.**
Tickets are $20 per person, $35 a couple. The club is located at 933 Market St., in Tacoma; http://www.tacomacomedclub.com.
Groovy New Year’s
Jazzbones will bring 2013 to a close with some of the best in regional reggae, a night headlined by Tacoma’s Mighty High with support from the Approach and Seattle’s Highlife Band, making their T-town debut. Music starts at 7 p.m., and $10 gets you through the door, assuming you’re 21 or older; http://www.jazzbones.com.