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Fun stuff and fireworks: A guide to New Year’s Eve

Bill DeYoung



New Year's Eve is Sunday, Dec. 31. File photo.

There are many ways to celebrate the arrival of 2023, including, of course, staying home and watching TV.

That, of course, is just one option. There are plenty of others.

Although New Year’s Eve celebrations, gatherings, dinners and parties can (and will) charge admission, everyone is free to look up at midnight and see the fireworks painting themselves on the inky canvas of the night sky.

First and foremost on the docket for St. Pete fireworks is Saturday’s city-sponsored NYE on the Pier event, which brings DJs and a lighted dance floor with disco ball, games, food vendors and other fun stuff to the Spa Beach area of the St. Pete Pier.

Admission (8 p.m. -1 a.m.) is free; the fireworks are launched from Vinoy Park and will be visible, as one would assume, from any good vantage point in the area.

Many PSTA routes including the SunRunner are free on New Year’s Eve; it and certain trolley routes will operate until 1 a.m.

Other scheduled fireworks displays on this side of the bay are:

Fireworks on Treasure Island: Best viewing: Gulf Front Park, 10400 Gulf Blvd.

Light Up Clearwater: The Amplify Clearwater organization sends pyrotechnics skyward, from the north end of Sand Key but visible (they proclaim) for virtually every spot on Clearwater Beach.

Dining and dancing etc.

For your party-planning pleasure, here are a few of the biggest New Year’s Eve bashes in the St. Pete region:

Floridian Social Club: New Year’s Eve at St. Pete’s biggest downtown bar (and music showplace) features circus and cabaret performers all night long (starting at 8 p.m.), the eight-piece jazz band Hot Tonic and a midnight champagne toast. Details here.

St. Petersburg Coliseum: “Swingin’ the New Year” is the handle for Saturday night’s dance-happy New Year’s Eve bash with the band Blues Walk. All info here.

Jason “Wayward Walls” Harvin’s installation at The Factory. Photo provided.

The Factory St. Pete: The installation by artist Jason Harvin (aka Wayward Walls) provides the setting for “NYE 2023 Wall Drop: Somewhere Inbetween,” starting up at 9 p.m. Saturday. Dancing and trancing courtesy of underground DJs  Brian Busto, Chang, Austin Van Der Bleek and others, plus Apollo Infiniti and drag performances, midnight champagne, etc. Details here.

Birchwood Canopy: The rooftop views of downtown and the bayfront are second to none, and since there will be fireworks over the Vinoy Basin, this will make a pretty great vantage point. Open bar, food stations, DJ and live band, champagne toast. Details are here.

The Club at Treasure Island: The Ovation show band brings the tunes, there’s a gourmet dinner, a midnight champagne toast and swell times aplenty. Details here.

Manhattan Casino: “New Year’s Eve on the Deuces” brings swingin’ dance sounds back to this historic venue – an open bar, live entertainment and “butler served” hors d’ oeuvres. Get details here.

Cage Brewing: Jam bands on tap include Dead Set Florida and Antelope (paying homage to Phish). It’s an all-ages show; tickets are here.

Red Mesa Cantina: Four-course meal, dancing in the rooftop bar, champagne and tequila midnight toasts. Yes please and thank you. Details here.

Don CeSar: The Great Gatsby-inspired Lobby Bar is ground zero for the Don’s NYE bash, with dancing to live music and numerous levels of tickets-with-amenities; check them out here.

Skipper’s Smokehouse: Similar to the Cage Brewing bash in St. Pete, Tampa’s venerable hippie restaurant/concert venue has the uber-popular Donna the Buffalo onstage for New Year’s Eve; admission includes party favors, champagne toast at midnight and a breakfast buffet. All info here.









1 Comment

1 Comment

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    Kyandra Darling

    December 29, 2022at1:59 pm

    The Manhattan Casino is now closed and the Jordan Ballroom will not be open for New Years Eve.

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