New Year’s Eve overflowing with events

Denver area offers myriad of good times for revelers


All over the world, people celebrate the beginning of a new year. In years past, readers may have watched music and fireworks across the nation — across the world — including New York City’s famous Ball Drop at Times Square, as the music of “Auld Lang Syne” plays.

Many of us have sung that over the years, wherever we happened to land on the final day of December. Recordings used are often of the Guy Lombardo version, which his orchestra played in New York City each New Year’s Eve from 1929 to 1976. A quick search tells us it means something like “days gone by,” and is sung as a symbol of being with friends on that night. Poet Robert Burns wrote it down from the traditional ballad in the late 18th century and the tradition continues ...

Denver area celebrations are extensive, including major hotels and restaurants across the metro area — one will want to be sure of a reservation wherever one chooses to go — and there are gatherings, concerts and more, if one is looking to be with many others — or perhaps a sip of bubbly at home with family or friends is one’s choice. Or perhaps a movie and a nice late supper. Foods served often include legumes: black-eyed peas, lentils, etc. because they resemble coins. Some countries feature pork (Cuba, Austria, Italy) and others enjoy ring-shaped cakes (Netherlands, Mexico, Greece, etc.)

Many area choices assume a fairly fat wallet.

• Bar Louies across the area, including the one at 10661 Westminster Blvd in Westminster Promenade are hosting parties. In Westminster, it’s a masquerade party with special New Years Eve cocktails, party favors and a champagne toast to ring in 2019. Tickets are $50 and available in advance at

• A personal favorite near home is the family-friendly free fireworks display on Denver’s 16th Street Mall if weather is decent. A stunning display is shot from the roofs of tall buildings at 9 p.m. and again at midnight, spilling over the dark facades with a blaze of color. Families with children might want to enjoy a sweet treat first and get established at a good vantage point to watch — somewhere between 15th and 17th streets … Parking is, of course, an issue — consider arrival by light rail.

Some may wish to enjoy the Colorado Symphony’s early program of Viennese music first, then walk over to 16th. And there are three parties at Union Station: Great Hall. Lower Level and Cooper Lounge — reservations required in all — 720-460-3738.

• Also downtown: The Decadence NYE Party at the Colorado Convention Center (two nights, Dec. 30 and 31); Resolution NYE at McNichols Civic Center Building, where there is a view of fireworks (tickets start at $119); White Rose Gala at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House, Denver Center Performing Arts (charity event, live music, costumes, usually sells out — “Great Gatsby” theme); NYE at the Fillmore Auditorium with Sound Tribe Sector Nine; and a short drive north, String Cheese Incident plays at 1st Bank Center in Broomfield. The Sherman Street Event Center holds a black-tie party with live bands.

• Children have a chance to celebrate at the Children’s Museum (9 a.m. to 4 p.m., with ball drops and countdowns) and there is skating at the downtown Denver rink at Skyline Park — free if you bring skates. The Bemis Library in Littleton also has a Noon Year’s Eve, for kids and families-reservations needed, 303-795-3961. In Denver, enjoy Zoo Year’s Eve and Zoo Lights, Blossoms of Light at Denver Botanic Gardens and a carousel at the Denver Pavilions ($3).

• Parker has a New Years Eve Gala at the Deep Space Event Center, 11020 Pikes Peak Drive. It benefits Dalton’s Noon Foundation, supporting research into children’s cancer. Tickets: $75 per person, (Honors Dalton Luke Levine, born 1998. “No More Cancer.”)


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