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Where to be when the ball drops this New Year’s Eve

Last New Year’s Eve was a disaster. I found myself speeding through Charlotte at 11:43 p.m. trying desperately to get somewhere to watch the ball drop that wasn’t a house party where I was surrounded by people that I didn’t know. I actually distinctly remember panicking as Bang Bang (you know, that song you couldn’t go anywhere without hearing) came on during Ryan Seacrest’s countdown of the top songs of 2014 – midnight was close.

I ended up on Montford, which seems to be the story of my life, I know, parked at Angry Ale’s, and walked confidently to the bouncer where I was told that it would be $99 per person to get in.

My bank account laughed out loud and we left. Southside was the same deal, but Brazwell’s took pity on my group and let us in for free at 11:55.

I got to watch the ball drop, but we got kicked out thirty minutes later. Yeah. New Year’s Eve 2014 was something for the books.

Who knew research was important when it came to this sort of thing? As it turns out, there are parties all around the city that go until 3 or 4 in the morning (and still have the price tag on them). Had I known this, I’m relatively certain I could have avoided the stress that came with trying to plan my evening 15 minutes before the ball dropped.

Don’t make that mistake. To help you avoid it, I’ve rounded up a list of places to start and end your night without the stress of literally racing against the clock.

All-American Pub/The Oak Room


200 E Bland St
9:30 p.m. – 1:30 a.m.

What you get: Plenty of packages to choose from. See them all here.
What you pay: $25-$110

The Westin


New Year’s Eve Extravaganza
601 S College St
9:00 p.m. – 3:00 a.m.

What you get: Plenty of packages to choose from. See them all here.
What you pay: $25 – $375

TropixNC

International New Year’s Eve
4701 North Tryon St
9 p.m. – 5 a.m.

What you get: Food, music, fun
What you pay: $15-25, depending on when you buy your ticket

Leroy Fox

A New York, New York New Year’s Eve Event
705 South Sharon Amity Road
8 p.m. – 3 a.m.

What you get: Five-course dinner, specialty cocktails, midnight champagne toast, party favors, DJ, and dancing
What you pay: $70

The Ritz


Gorgeous at the Ritz New Year’s Eve 2016
201 E Trade Street
9 p.m. – 2 a.m.

What you get: Plenty of packages to choose from. See them here.
What you pay: $20-$650

Rooftop 210


New Year’s Eve Under the Stars
EpiCentre
9 p.m. – 2 a.m.

What you get: DJ, dancing, drinks, buffet
What you pay: $70-$1,000

Howl at the Moon

EpiCentre
8 p.m. – 2 a.m.

What you get: Two house drinks for up to $8.25, champagne toast at midnight, party favors. See the packages here.
What you pay: $40-$100

Strike City

The Uproar: A Vintage NYE Affair
EpiCentre
10 p.m. – 2 a.m.

What you get: Plenty of packages to choose from. See them here.
What you pay: $15-$500

Club Vibrations

Black & Gold New Year’s Eve Party with the Uptown Swagga Band
5237 Ablemarle Road
8:00 p.m.

What you get: Plenty of packages to choose from. See them here.
What you pay: $15-$800

Angry Ale’s

#MOFO New Year’s Bash 2016
1518 Montford Drive
8 p.m.

What you get: Plenty of packages to choose from. See them here.
What you pay: $20-$120

The Grady Cole Center

310 North Kings Drive
8 p.m.

What you get: A chance to party with Tamanna Bhatia. There are plenty of packages to choose. See them here.
What you pay: $49-$999

Omni Hotel

Southern Skyline New Year’s Eve
132 E Trade Street
9 p.m.

What you get: Choose from general admission or VIP here.
What you pay: $125-$180

The Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts & Culture

Pure Decadence
551 South Tryon Street
9 p.m. – 2 a.m.

What you get: Four packages to choose from. See them here.
What you pay: $20-$375

Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden

Sparkle & Glow New Year’s Eve
6500 S New Hope Road, Belmont
6 p.m. – 9 p.m.

What you get: Traditions from all around the world and a luminary release for wishes in 2016
What you pay: Free with admission ($6.95-$12.95). Wine and cider tastings available for $20 per guest

Galway Hooker Pub

17044 Kenton Drive, Cornelius
8 p.m.

What you get: Open bar, hor d’oeuvres buffet, champagne toast. VIP tables available for purchase.
What you pay: $60 in November, $70 in December

The Double Door Inn

The Spongetones New Year’s Eve Party
1218 Charlottetowne Avenue
9:30 p.m.

What you get: A chance to ring in the New Year with American power pop band The Spongetones (they formed in Charlotte)
What you pay: $12-$15

Where to be when the ball drops this New Year’s Eve Last New Year’s Eve was a disaster. I found myself speeding through Charlotte at 11:43 p.m. trying desperately to get somewhere to watch the ]]>