To stay at home or enjoy a night on the town on New Year’s Eve – that is the question.
A surge in COVID cases this holiday season has threatened some NYE events in Delaware, including a big end-of-year concert at The Grand in Wilmington that’s been postponed.
On Dec. 27, Delaware’s seven-day average of COVID cases was 995, nearly triple the number of cases from its seven-day average on Nov. 27, which was 337.
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Despite the uptick in cases, there are still a handful of events you and your kids can enjoy around the state if you feel comfortable leaving the house to ring in 2022.
We recommend checking with venues closer to the holiday to be sure the fun is still on, and to stay up-to-date on COVID-related safety procedures.
The weather report for Friday is projected to be partly cloudy and in the high 50s, so you’ll want to dress accordingly for a big night out.
Here are seven fun ways to ring in the New Year in the First State, as well as a cool event in Ocean City, Maryland.
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The Sands on New Year’s Eve in Rehoboth Beach
Wave goodbye to 2021 in a tropical, Tiki-inspired night on the beach. The celebration will include a buffet dinner, appetizers, gourmet dessert station, coffee bar, an open bar and Champagne toast. Providing the night’s soundtrack will be Sons of Pirates. Reservations are required.
The Atlantic Sands Hotel & Conference Center (1 Baltimore Ave., Rehoboth Beach) at 8 p.m., Friday. Tickets are $439 per couple (includes two tickets to the party, hotel and breakfast for two) and $165 per person (one ticket to the party only). Visit atlanticsandshotel.com or on Facebook or (302) 227-2511.
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White Panda brings Firefly vibes to Dewey Beach
What’s black, white and red all over? It’s called pandemonium. Favorite Firefly DJ White Panda will paint Dewey Beach red with good vibes when he returns for another New Year’s Eve celebration. Panda dropped his new “Nightclub” album this year featuring an eclectic roster of artists across 30 tracks including “Power Of Pac” (2Pac and Huey Lewis and the News), “1nce Again Friends” (A Tribe Called Quest and Madeon), “Take What Is Toxic” (Post Malone, Ozzy Osbourne and Britney Spears) and “Walkin’ On Jackie Chan” (Smash Mouth, Tiësto and Dzeko).
Bottle & Cork (1807 DE-1, Dewey Beach) at 9 p.m., Friday. Tickets are $42. Visit bottleandcork.com or (302) 227-7272.
Celebrate in a furry costume in Newark
Guests are encouraged to wear their favorite furry costumes and play tabletop games as they roll into the New Year (with dice) in this celebration with a unique twist. The event, presented by The Furst State Foundation, is a love letter to the furry community (cosplayers who wear furry costumes) and features a dealers den, a buffet dinner (including Bourbon street pork and vegetarian tri-color Tortellini al Fresco) and more.
Guests are required to provide a vaccination card or a negative COVID 19 test within 72 hours prior to the start of the event start if you are allergic to the vaccine.
Embassy Suites By Hilton Newark Wilmington South (654 S. College Ave., Newark) from 4 p.m., Friday to 1 a.m., Sunday. Admission for adults is $45-$105; for children ages 8 to 17, it’s $40. Visit newyearsfurryball.com or (302) 368-8000.
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Drink and paint on New Year’s Eve in Newark
Not everyone is a night owl. And Painting with a Twist knows this. Grown-ups will have an opportunity to ring in the New Year early while connecting with friends over a glass of wine, and munching on their favorite snacks. Seriously, patrons are allowed to bring food/snacks and small plates. But this isn’t a BYOB event, since complimentary beverages (including wine) will be provided. No creative painting skill is needed either, but be sure to bring it if you got it.
Painting with a Twist (400 Suburban Drive, Newark) from 4-6:30 p.m., Friday. paintingwithatwist.com/studio/newark
Seacrets will make a splash in Ocean City, Maryland
Premier Ocean City nightclub Seacrets aims to keep you dancing later than most New Year’s Eve events. This year they’ll keep you grooving until 4 a.m. The celebration includes a Champagne toast and balloon drop at midnight, followed by four more hours of live entertainment. The entire night will feature five bands and three DJs. Guests also can enjoy a three-course dinner for an extra cost.
‘Firewalk’ into the New Year in Middletown
Folks with a flaming desire to kick off 2022 can do so while standing on hot coals. “Ignition the Firewalk: New Years Eve Gala” is for brave souls interested in walking barefoot across 1,200 degrees of scorching rocks.
This event is a test for anyone that wants to shatter their limiting beliefs. At the same time, folks should consult with a doctor if they’re unsure whether they’re healthy enough to complete this challenge. After all, it wouldn’t be cute spending New Year’s Day in the hospital.
108 Patriot Drive, Suite A, Middletown; 6:30 p.m., Friday. Admission is $99-$149. Visit ‘Ignition the Firewalk: New Years Eve Gala’ on Facebook.
Rusty Rudder on New Year’s Eve in Dewey Beach
Dance, eat and be merry during the final party of this year. The night features performances by Love Seed Mama Jump, Laura Lea & Tripp Fabulous, JJ Rupp and Kono Nation. There will be food and an open bar.
Rusty Rudder (113 Dickinson Ave., Dewey Beach) at 9 p.m., Friday. Tickets are $110. Visit rustyrudder.com or (302) 227-3888.
Confetti Countdown on New Year’s Eve in Wilmington
Mom won’t let you stay up late to see the ball drop? No problem, kids can work around that by enjoying a countdown from 10 that ends with a blast of confetti cannons. Since one countdown isn’t enough, there will be four countdowns, and families can choose a time that works best for them. Additionally, there will be a musical performance by We Kids Rock.
Masks are required for all guests, ages 2 or older.
Delaware Children’s Museum (550 Justison St., Wilmington) at 11 a.m., noon, 1 and 2 p.m., Friday. Admission is $12 general admission and free for kids 12 months or younger. Visit delawarechildrensmuseum.org or Delaware Children’s Museum on Facebook (302) 654-2340.
Andre Lamar is the features/lifestyle reporter. If you have an interesting story idea, email Andre Lamar at firstname.lastname@example.org.