The year is ending, again, and that means we’re all trying to figure out what we have the energy to do celebration-wise, again. When you’re young the answer’s easy—hit up one of the roughly five billion bars or restaurants having parties or seatings, drink a lot, and cheer in 2018 with drunken gusto (or, you know, get into a screaming fight with your significant other and end the evening crying while sitting on the curb—odds are good for either outcome).
If that’s what you’re after, you’re in luck! There are literally dozens and dozens of choices, ranging in price, style, and accommodations—if you just need jukebox music, cheap beer and cheaper champagne at midnight, we got you. If you want classy grub and cocktails and jazz, there’s a place for you. Basically if your NYE centers on food and booze, Hoboken was built for you. And there are already lots of guides out there on the Web detailing your options.
If you’re not looking forward to a rushed “three course” dinner and an underwhelming glass of bubbly, or the thought of a DJ refusing all requests while he spins a hellscape of bad beats—if, in other words, you’re looking for something else to do on New Year’s Eve, we have a few thoughts.
Real talk: It’s going to be NINE DEGREES on Sunday night. The wind chill is expected to make it feel like NEGATIVE FOUR DEGREES.
In other words, the people who go into Times Square to watch the ball drop this year? Insane. Crazy people.
However, if you want a buzz of energy and an experience you’ll never forget (assuming you survive), you could hop a bus or train into New York City and stand among the freezing masses. Three tips: One, go early—many places suggest claiming your spot at noon if you want primo viewing options. Two, bring food, because there won’t be a hot dog in sight. And three—and we cannot stress this enough—prepare to hold it, because there are no bathrooms. We repeat for emphasis: There are no bathrooms.
Keeping it low-key could mean heading to the movie theater. Our own Bow Tie doesn’t have reclining seats or assigned seating or other innovations, but it’s warm, there are snacks, and you can spend the whole day watching movies, starting with Justice League at 11:30AM and ending with Father Figures at 10:30PM (although, be warned; the latter is 2 hours and 5 minutes long, so you’ll miss midnight if you still want to ring it in). With some planning you can be snug, hydrated, and entertained right up until the big moment.
A few spots in Hoboken are eschewing the DJ for a real, live band. Amanda’s and Elysian Cafe both tout live music as part of their dinner (although you should definitely call ahead to see if any tickets are available), and Maxwell’s has The Full 9, a cover band, playing (check for availability as well). And Finnegans Pub is hosting The Brian Rigby Band for a full show on NYE, a nice alternative to throbbing dance music.
The Antique Bar & Bakery
The re-invented (and quite awesome) Antique Bar & Bakery is offering a neat theme evening, A Night at the Copa! Hosted by co-owners Chef Paul Gerard and Joe Castelo, this event isn’t just a great dinner and a glass of champagne, it’s a whole thing inspired by the 1960’s Copacabana. That means showgirls, comedy routines, live music, dancing, and more. Call for availability.
It’s not a nighttime event, but Artevino offers a “Baby It’s Cold Outside Brunch” on NYE from 11AM to 1:30PM. Bring a bottle of bubbly and some friends, they provide the paints, bagels, cream cheese, and orange juice. You spend a few hours painting and sipping wine, you go home with a piece of art, and it only costs $38.
Here’s a radical idea: Instead of eating terrible bar food and drinking far too much, why not go for a run or a bike ride? We’ll repeat our earlier warnings: NINE DEGREES, people, and a WIND CHILL OF NEGATIVE FOUR. That said, the New York Road Runner’s Club organizes the traditional Midnight Run in New York. It starts off with dancing at 10PM, then a countdown to the new year, then a four mile run. Sure, it’s insane, but at least you’ll be getting your blood pumping. Alternatively, Time’s Up has organized a bike ride and outdoor party for NYE, and invites you to join in even if you don’t want to bike, skate, or board through the streets when, as we may have mentioned, it’ll be NINE DEGREES.
Or, you know, buy you and yours some tasty snacks, some great beverages, turn up the heat, fire up Netflix, and start your New Year right by falling asleep long before the ball drops, like civilized people.