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Celebrate New Year's Eve in style

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Get outta here, 2013. Come on down, 2014.

Here are a few options for you to help say farewell (or good riddance) to a rather difficult year.

(Remember: Drink responsibly. And don't forget, if you've had too much to drink, you can use Tow to Go. AAA and Bud Light provide this free service to AAA members and nonmembers – a tow truck will take the vehicle and the driver home within a 10-mile radius. Just call 855-286-9246.)

Downtown Sarasota New Year's Party and Pineapple Drop – 1:30 p.m.-1 a.m. Children's rides and games on State Street. At 8 p.m., Doug Deming & The Jewel Tones will hit the stage at Lemon Avenue and First Street; Gods and Generals will be at the Gator Club, and DJs Xtreme, Kensi and Kiko will be on hand. Join Bob Harrigan at Main Street and Lemon Avenue as he counts down to midnight with the Pineapple Drop. sarasotanewyearsparty.com.

Libby's New Year's Eve – All night. AJ and the Automatics kick off the entertainment in the LBar, followed by DJ Scotty B until 2 a.m. No cover. BTW, the next day at 10:30 a.m., Libby's offers its 50-plus Bloody Mary & Mimosa Bar, plus an ala Carte Brunch menu. Early dinner service starts at 3:30 p.m. 1917 S. Osprey Ave., Sarasota. 487-7300; libbyscafebar.com.

New Year's Eve with the Midnight Swinger – 9:15 p.m. Help McCurdy's Comedy Theatre spend its final New Year's at its North Trail spot before it moves into its new downtown digs in March. In April, the Midnight Swinger, a Vegas-style comedian and entertainer, set the Guinness Book World Record for the longest stand-up performance at 40 hours, 8 minutes. Tickets for the McCurdy's show are $55. 3333 N. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota. 941-3869; mccurdyscomedy.com.

Damon Fowler Group at the Blue Rooster – Two shows, New Year's Eve: 7:30 and 10 p.m. $15. 1525 Fourth St., Sarasota. 388-7539; blueroostersrq.com. READ MORE: Damon Fowler on new album 'Sounds of Home'

New Year's Eve at Darwin's on 4th – Featuring the Latin music of Nic and Ari at 9 p.m. Regular menu and special selection created by Chef Darwin. Seatings at 5, 8 and 11 p.m. 1525 Fourth St., Sarasota. 343-2165; darwinson4th.com.

Bijou Cafe – Full menu and prix fixe special menu available. Seatings from 6-10 p.m., complimentary champagne toast at midnight. 1287 First St., Sarasota. 366-8111; bijoucafe.net.

New Year’s Eve Concert & Dance – 9:30 p.m.-12:30 a.m. The 1960s-style rock band My Generation, which specializes in the British Invasion, plays the Elks Lodge, 2511 75th St. W., Bradenton. 792-1511.

Pier 22 – 4 p.m.-1 a.m. Buffet/cash bar, from 9 p.m.-1 a.m. ($59.95). Also, a New Year's Eve ballroom celebration features an open bar and buffet for $99.95. 1200 First Ave. W., Bradenton. 748-8087; pier22dining.com.

New Year's Eve at Ocean Blues – 7 p.m. Two dinner shows with the big-band jazz of Ocean's Eleven. $75 per couple. 1936 Hillview St., Sarasota. 366-3010; oceanblues.net.

New Year's Eve Bash at Visani – 10:15 p.m., featuring stand-up comic Greg Morton. Afterward, enjoy '70s-'80s music videos and dancing from midnight to 2 a.m. Package includes appetizer, main course, dessert, champagne toast, party favors. $99. 2400 Kings Highway, Port Charlotte. 629-9191; visani.net.

Rockin' New Year's Dinner & Dance Party – Dinner seatings, 6:30 p.m.; entertainment/dancing, 9 p.m., with entertainer Kim Jenkins. $75 (includes appetizer, dinner, happy hour, champagne toast). Blue Lagoon Restaurant, 2000 Oyster Creek Drive, Englewood. 475-1030; newbluelagoon.com.

WSLR New Year's Eve Celebration – 8 p.m.-1 a.m. Featuring Applebutter Express, Ober Rivers and his DUI’s and Triple El (formerly Tuff Sons). Fogartyville Community Media and Arts Center, 525 Kumquat Court, Sarasota. Tickets: $12 in advance, $15 door; children 16 and under free. Richard’s Catering will provide traditional, vegetarian and vegan hors d’oeuvres as well as late-night breakfast burritos. Attendees can bring their own noisemakers for the Midnight Kumquat Drop. Special guests from the Rhythm Inlet will perform to welcome in the New Year at midnight. wslr.org.

New Year's Eve Cabaret Show starring Melissa Cripps – 7:30 p.m. in the Langdon Playhouse inside Charlotte Players Community Theater Center at 1182 Market Circle, Port Charlotte. Cripps will be performing two sets of Broadway classic show tunes along with favorite songs from Bette Midler, Liza Minnelli, Judy Garland, Karen Carpenter and more. Tickets are $35. Includes light hors d’ouevres and beverages. Reserve tickets by calling the Charlotte Players office at 255-1022 or visit charlotteplayers.org.

First Night St. Petersburg – 4 p.m.-midnight. For the 21st year, St. Petersburg rings in the New Year with family-oriented festivities with music stages, entertainment, drama, dance, games, art, fireworks and more at multiple venues downtown. Bradenton's Have Gun Will Travel and the Miami-based Lee Boys will play the North Straub Park Finale Stage. Have Gun Will Travel performs from 7-9 p.m.; the Lee Boys follow, from 9 p.m. to midnight. Tickets are $10. (727) 823-8906; firstnightstpete.com.

Channelside Lights Up the Bay – 7 p.m. Tampa's Channelside cranks up its annual New Year's Eve event with live music and DJs in the courtyard, dancing, and fireworks set off as the clock strikes midnight. The wharf will be open for fireworks viewing, but only 3,500 free wristbands will be distributed for admission. The courtyard stays open until 3 a.m. (813) 223-4250; channelsidebayplaza.com.

Main Street Live
The Lauren Mitchell Band is heading to Memphis for the 30th annual International Blues Challenge in January, but first they will rock a special New Year’s Eve edition of Main Street Live in Bradenton. The IBC opens Jan. 21 with the FedEx International Showcase and concludes Jan. 25 with the IBC Finals and the Best Self-Produced CD winner announcement.
5-11:55 p.m. Tuesday; Old Main Street (12th Street West), Bradenton; 896-8860.

New Year’s Eve Block Party Toast
The Ritz-Carlton’s “New Year’s Eve Block Party Toast” is all about saying goodbye to 2013 and hello to 2014 in style: on Sarasota Bay with guests enjoying live music and dancing (almost) all night long. Ticket price includes party favors and a glass of champagne.
8 p.m. to 1 a.m. Tuesday; The Ritz-Carlton, 1111 Ritz Carlton Drive, Sarasota; $55; 309-2000; ritzcarlton.com

Last modified: December 24, 2013
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