No matter how you plan to celebrate this New Year’s Eve – at the Gator Bowl, in elegant refinement at the Black & White Masquerade Ball or quietly at home with popcorn and the big ball drop in Times Square – there’s something to occupy your mind in several of our local counties.
As always, celebrate responsibly and loudly.
And wear a great party hat.
2013 Downtown Countdown – Mon., Dec. 31, 9 p.m. -12:30 a.m. Bo Diddley Community Plaza, 111 E. University Ave., Gainesville, Fla. 32635. Admission: FREE & open to the public. The City of Gainesville Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs Department will host Downtown Countdown, a New Year’s Eve celebration concert, in downtown.Headlining the concert and celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Rolling Stones, is the Rolling Stones tribute band, Mick Marino and The Nasty Habits. The opening band for the celebration is the Gainesville-based reggae group, The Irie Ones (formerly called Iration). 352-393-7527.
Burning Bowl Ceremony – Sun., Dec. 30, 11 a.m. Unity of Gainesville, 8801 NW 39th Ave., Gainesville, Fla. 32606. Admission: FREE & open to the public. A beautiful and moving way to say goodbye to 2012 and celebrate 2013. Join us in burning away those old negative thoughts and feelings in the burning bowl and embracing new positive experiences with a letter to God. This ceremony will be repeated on New Year’s Eve at 7 p.m. 352-373-1030.
Global Peace Dance (Sufi Dancing) – Mon., Dec. 31, 7:30-10 p.m. United Church of Gainesville,1624 NW Fifth Ave., Gainesville, Fla. 32603. Admission: $10 suggested donation. Welcoming men & women of all faiths to participate in a sacred & joyful candlelit atmosphere, live music, singing, & dancing bring the year to closure & welcome the new as we ring bells in a spirit of harmony & optimism. The simple circle dances will be taught & everyone joins in. Email FLretreats@gmail.com for more information. 352-378-3500.
Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra | Toast! To the New Year! – Mon., Dec. 31, 8:30 p.m. Times-Union Center for the Performing Arts, 300 Water St., Jacksonville, Fla. Admission: $50-$120. Featuring the show-stopping song and dance duo Joan Hess and Kirby Ward. Enjoy light classics, waltzes and popular hits from Broadway to Vienna. After the concert, the party continues in the lobby overlooking the St. Johns River. Fabulous private outdoor view of the midnight fireworks. The after-party includes light hors d’oeuvres- champagne- cash bar and live music and dancing.
New Year’s Eve Black and White Masquerade Ball – Mon., Dec. 31, 9 p.m. The Ritz-Carlton- Amelia Island, 4750 Amelia Island Pkwy., Fernandina Beach, Fla. Admission: $195 per couple, age 21 & over with ID. An evening of glamour and style reminiscent of Truman Capote’s infamous Black and White Ball of 1996. Lavish food- live music- dancing- open bar and fireworks. Black and White attire encouraged. Masks provided and guests are welcome to bring their own. Reservations at 904-277-1100.
Roaring 20’s Party for New Year’s Eve – Mon., Dec. 31, 8 p.m. Sheffield’s on Centre Street, Fernandina Beach, Fla. Admission: $20 per person, $200 per VIP table and $600 per VIP booth. will host a. Dress to impress in styles from the past. Red carpet entrance and complimentary champagne until midnight. DJ Heavy Hess will spin the best Top 40 video mixes. Contact Bill Childers at firstname.lastname@example.org.
New Year’s Eve at The Palace Saloon & Uncle Charlie’s – Mon., Dec. 31, 9 p.m.- 1 a.m. 117 Centre St., Fernandina Beach, Fla. Admission: No tickets required. Face for Radio will perform. Enjoy a champagne toast at midnight. Contact Bill Childers at email@example.com.
New Year’s Eve at the Hammerhead Beach Bar – Mon., Dec. 31. 2045 S. Fletcher Ave., Fernandina Beach, Fla. The Hammerhead celebrates in its own style with a shot toast at midnight. Come as you are. Buck Smith and Jim Barcaro will team up for this special occasion. Contact Bill Childers at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Old Town Art & Craft Show | New Year’s Eve Weekend – Starting Sat., Dec. 29 & Sun., Dec. 30, 10 a.m.- 5 p.m. Francis Field, 29 W. Castillo Dr., St Augustine, Fla. Admission: FREE & open to the public. This carefully juried fine art and fine craft show consists of top-notch artists and craftsmen from Northeast Florida and around the country- each offering a unique collection of original hand-made fine art and fine craft. You’ll find everything from funky pottery to elegant paintings, exquisite jewelry to stunning sculpture, fabulous fiber art to vivid glass work. The Old Visit www.OldTownArtShow.com for further information.
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OFFICIAL BIO: K Truitt is a second-generation, native Floridian born in Jacksonville. Truitt worked in public higher education for 25 years, most recently in Texas, is a successful grant writer, knows newspaper publishing, printing and graphic design and wants to work in the public sector. Contact: email@example.com