If youre looking for a fun, safe and satisfying way to spend New Years Eve in the Triangle, here are a few suggestions that range from family entertainment to first-rate grownup revelry:
The big one
First Night Raleigh, the granddaddy of all Baby-New-Year-welcoming events in the Triangle, keeps getting bigger. This year, First Night Raleigh covers 24 blocks of downtown and involves more than 35 venues. The family fun starts at 2 p.m. at the museums of History and Natural Sciences (11 West Jones Street) with Tots Under the Big Top! on the fourth floor of the Nature Research Center, with crafts, interactive music and performances for the wee ones. Throughout the day and into the night, celebrants may enjoy fashion shows, interactive art installations and games. Headlining the live music is Durham-based Delta Rae on the main stage on City Plaza followed, of course, by the Acorn drop and fireworks at midnight, best enjoyed from the top of the 90-foot Ferris Wheel.
Admission passes are $9; all-day passes are $12 for adults and $10 for kids 6-12.
The full schedule and tickets are available at www.firstnightraleigh.com.
The cool one
Fans of cool jazz can gorge on two kinds of a sumptuous feast at The Cotton Room (807 East Main St., Durham), as The Art of Cool Project presents New Years Jazzin Eve from 8 p.m. until, you know, whenever. Foreign Exchange is the main course for the musical portion of the festivities, topping a bill that includes The Al Strong Quintet, Marcus Anderson, Yolanda Rabun and guest DJ Apple Juice Kid. The food-and-drinks portion is enticing, too: a chicken-and-waffles breakfast buffet and a cash bar.
Tickets start at $50 for general admission and are on sale at cottonroomaocnye2013-efbevent.eventbrite.com. VIP and seating options are available.
The funny one
The year 2012 was a tough one for a lot of people, so maybe youll want to just reboot and laugh in the next one with DSI Comedy Theater in Carrboro. The improvisational comedy troupe is offering two sets Monday at its venue at 200 N. Greensboro St., in Carr Mill Mall. The first is a family-friendly 7 p.m. Improv Slam. The ringing-it-in vibe for folks over 21 starts at 10 p.m. with Best Countdown Ever, a good bet if youre looking for something wild and wacky. Tickets to the 7 p.m. show are $12 ($10 for students with a valid student I.D.) and $7 for children under 12.
Tickets to the 10 p.m. show are $20 (available at www.DSIcomedy.com) for a package of excellent improv comedy, party favors and a toast (presumably, a funny one).
The wet one
Motorco Music Hall (723 Rigsbee Ave., Durham) will ring in the New Year with a yacht bell (figuratively speaking but who knows?) at the Motorboat New Years Eve w/ The Wusses. Come dressed in your finest yacht wear for Durhams beloved Wusses, who really bring out the nautical breeze wafting through `70s soft-rock staples such as Escape (The Pina Colada Song) and Id Really Love to See You Tonight. Doors open at 8 p.m., and the show starts at 9 with The Pusses (seriously).
Tickets are $15 in advance and $18 at the door ( motorcomusic.com). The countdown includes a balloon drop, a champagne toast, and hors doeuvres will be served (of course!)