Let’s face it: 2017 was a bit of a disaster. From hurricanes to politics — not to mention the deaths of some music greats — we think it’s fair to say that 2017 won’t be terribly missed. And what better way to kick it out the door than with an epic, unforgettable ringing in of the New Year? Here are our picks for where to go this New Year’s Eve, depending on exactly what kind of a shindig you have in mind.
1. Splurge here. Not every night of the year is worth a splurge, but at Boogie Nights in Tropicana, it always feels like a celebration. This New Year’s Eve, go for tickets ($75) to the Boogie Nights NYE Celebration with the star-studded cast of Boogie Nights characters and the world famous Michael Jackson impersonator, hot and cold hors d’oeuvres, free coat check, party favors, balloon drop and an open bar from 9 to 11 p.m. Also at Tropicana, head to Cuba Libre for a five-course prix fixe dinner ($99 per person, includes late night admission … details in No. 3) or to a casual celebration at Fiesta Buffet with music from DJ Nater and DJ John Kelly ($38 per person). At Harrah’s, Martorano’s will host its Yo Cuz NYE Extravaganza ($160 per person) with music by the Sensational Soul Cruisers. If you’d like something outside the casino scene, check out Kelsey’s celebration for an extravagant soul food buffet dinner, Ciroc open bar and live entertainment from Tia McNeal and DJ Sterl ($85 per person); The Claridge for a Gatsby Style New Year’s Eve party with an open bar, passed hors d’oeuvres, party favors and a live DJ ($59 per person); Renault Winery for another Gatsby NYE party with a cocktail reception, three-course dinner and DJ entertainment ($110 per person); Johnny’s Café for its 10th Annual NYE celebration complete with live entertainment, a champagne toast and a four-course sit down dinner ($100 per person); Sofia of Margate for its four-course diner celebration package ($99 per person) with live entertainment and a champagne toast at midnight; Tavern on the Bay in Somers Point for a special NYE menu and live music ($99 per person); or Blue Water Grill at FantaSea Flagship Resort for a White Hot NYE Winter party with a lavish four-course dinner, champagne toast and a fireworks spectacular, all in your finest white attire ($99 per person).
2. Lay low. No one says you have to fight the crowds on New Year’s Eve. If laying low and hitting your favorite neighborhood bar or restaurant is more your style, then we’ve got some good choices for you. A Touch of Italy in Egg Harbor Township will hold a delicious dinner to the sounds of Doug Jennings. Clancy’s by the Bay in Somers Point will host a no-cover NYE party with a DJ. Head to The Anchorage Tavern in Somers Point for a special NYE dinner menu, tons of drink specials and a DJ; to Chickie’s & Pete’s in Egg Harbor for an Anti-New Year’s Eve Party with live local music and great craft beer; to Chickie’s & Pete’s at the Tropicana for a party with drink specials, party favors and a live DJ; to Vagabond in Atlantic City for its annual NYE party with DJ Live Wirez; to Gregory’s in Somers Point for a DJ, a special pre-fixed menu and party favors; to St. George’s Pub in Brigantine for a special menu, champagne toast and live music with Paul Tozz; to Maynard’s in Margate for its annual NYE party; to Tomatoes in Margate for a party complete with a special holiday menu and champagne toast; to The Watering Hole Café in Weymouth for a celebration with live music and a champagne toast; to Charlie’s Bar in Somers Point for a special menu, a champagne toast, DJ and party favors; to The Crab Trap in Somers Point for live music with That 70s Band; to The Continental for a party hosted by DJ Jordan Williams; to LB One in Egg Harbor Township for the best in steak dinners; or to Paragon Bar & Grille in Mays Landing for a festive night with a champagne toast, DJ and giveaways.
3. DJ in the house. Those dancing shoes aren’t going to walk themselves. Get decked out and strut to Premiere at Borgata for a weekend-long DJ infused celebration, where you can catch Grammy award-winning DJ Tiesto on Friday, DJ Vice on Saturday and Laidback Luke on Sunday. Keep the party going at Premiere with Ross One on Monday. At Haven in the Golden Nugget, ring in 2018 with SKAM artist and radio personality DJ Jerzy and DJ Chris Devine. And at Tropicana, head to Anthem for a Solid Gold 2018 with 24K entertainment by DJ Vito G and DJ A Drop, as well as a three-hour open bar package from 9 p.m. to midnight; to Ivan Kane’s Kiss Kiss Nightclub for Atlantic City’s Sexiest NYE Party complete with a balloon drop, party favors and champagne toast; to Cuba Libre for a NYE Fiesta with a mega dance hall, DJB3B0 spinning Latin fusion, salsa, merengue and bachata, and DJ Swoosh spinning today’s top club hit; or to Tango’s Lounge for a night with DJ Ralph. Over at The Rainbow Room in Atlantic City, Jenna Tall and DJ Steve Sidewalk will also host New Year’s Eve party.
4. Bang for your buck. Lucky for us, there are a few places in town where you can find multiple parties under one roof, and nowhere is this truer than at The Playground Pier. With tiered ticket levels — General, VIP and Ultra VIP, all of which include a 5 hour open bar from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m. — and a party that includes six different venues, a 20,000 square foot nightclub and multiple live bands, The Playground Pier has something for every party-goer. Or head to Harrah’s and welcome in 2018 with a splash at The Pool After Dark, with an open bar from 9 to 11 p.m. and a champagne toast at midnight; at Eden Lounge with The Nerds; or at X-Bar with C Well and Jason E. Things are just as good at Resorts, with NYE parties at Bar One with music by Kelly LaVigna and DJ Jason E; at Landshark Bar & Grill with DJ Stanup; and at Margaritaville for a margarita toast at midnight and music by Audio Riot. Stay overnight and head into the Atlantic the next morning during the 27th Annual Polar Bear Plunge in front of Resorts on New Year’s Day. Over at the Golden Nugget, head to Rush Lounge for music with Bobby & Kit at 6 p.m., with Seven Stone charging things up at 10 p.m.; to the aforementioned Haven Nightclub for DJ entertainment; or to free parties at Vic & Anthony’s, Grotto, Lillie’s and Chart House.
5. Marathon style. It’s the biggest night of the year … why rush it? Make your way to an all-night party to truly kick 2018 off with a bang. Bally’s Wild Wild West will ring in the New Year with an all-nighter. For food at Bally’s, either go directly to Harry’s Oyster Bar for a NYE menu, or choose between the Go Wild Package, The Celebrity Package (at Guy Fieri, Gordon Ramsay or Buca di Beppo) or The Hell’s Kitchen Takeover Package at Gordon Ramsay, then head to Wild Wild West for the dance party of the year with Burnt Sienna, Gypsy Wisdom, DJ Aiden Scott, DJ Philly Will and DJ John Lee. If that’s packed, head to Toga Bar at Caesars for a night with DJ Joey Dino. At Showboat, things will last just as long. Kick off the night with comedy shows featuring Matt Bridgestone, Zach Pickert, Ray Vazquez and Clipperman at 8 and 10 p.m., and follow things up with an after party featuring DJ Nice-N-Loud until 4 a.m.
6. Listen live here. Want live, local bands this New Year’s Eve? Head to Gypsy Bar at Borgata and get amped up with Sidearm starting at 7 p.m. and Lost in Paris at 11 p.m. Looking to double your fun? At Tropicana, stop by 10 North Lounge for live piano by Darin McDonald, or RiRa for not one, but two celebrations: the Irish New Year at 7 p.m. with live music from 5 to 8 p.m., and then American New Year at midnight with live music from Crisbie & The Way Outs starting at 10 p.m. Live music isn’t just for the casinos; plenty of local bars and restaurants will be home to live performances of all creeds. Head to The Cove in Brigantine for a special NYE menu and music by The Brandon Ireland Duo; to Crossroads Bar & Grill in Egg Harbor City for a party with an all-day and night happy hour and music from Tony & Mel; to Brick House Pub and Grille in Mays Landing for a champagne toast and music from Cool With Me; to Fred & Ethel’s Lantern Light Tavern in Galloway for a celebration with Vickie Austin; to Gourmet Italian Cuisine in Galloway for a bash with The Nancy Malcun Band; to McCullough’s Pub for a pre-fixe dinner, entertainment from DJ Judy Cline and both an Irish and American New Year’s toast; to JD’s Pub & Grill in Galloway for live music with Mott’s Creek Pickers and great food specials; to Leatherhead Pub in Egg Harbor City for a party with passed hors ‘oeuvres, a midnight champagne toast and live music with Indelible Groove; to Ram’s Head Inn in Galloway for a prix-fixe menu, complimentary champagne toast and music from Beth Tinnon; or to Steve and Cookies by the Bay for nightly specials along with live jazz.
7. Celebrate your sisters. What better way could there be to ring in the new year than by celebrating your sisters? Head to one of two headlining shows put on by some of the greatest sister acts of our time. At Resorts, check out The Pointer Sisters at 10:30 p.m. before heading to one of the parties mentioned above. Or go to Tropicana for fireworks at 9 p.m. (you can watch them directly from the dining room at Olon, where four-course dinner packages are available). followed by a show with Sister Sledge at 9:30 p.m. Afterwards, head into The Quarter for a NYE countdown and a famous frozen drink at Wet Willie’s, a beer at Firewater, or a champagne toast and DJ at A Dam Good Sports Bar.