I doubt I'm the only one who won't be sorry to see 2010 go. It has truly been a mixed bag of a year, with some astronomical highs and devastating lows - but enough about my girl Lindsay Lohan (allegedly).
On Friday night, it's time to ring in 2011 in style. Here are some helpful hints for celebrating New Year's Eve without regrets, coming from a quarter-century of sage wisdom:
1. Keep your expectations low. In fact, set them as low as you think they can go, and then lower them even farther. Based on my non-scientific, inconclusive research, New Year's Eve is the most disappointing holiday of the entire year.
2. This is a holiday marked by drinking to excess. Knowing this, take some precautions. Keep that fancy smartphone tucked safely away in your pocket or purse (preferably a compartment that zips). Figure out where you're staying and how you'll get there. Avoid obnoxious drunks - and most importantly, don't be one yourself.
3. For whatever reason, New Year's Eve has the tendency to make one feel confessional. Perhaps it's the onset of a new year and the contemplation that comes with the closing of one chapter and the beginning of another, amplified by champagne bubbles. Before you send that text, make that phone call or show up at someone's front door, wait and see if you still feel the same way in the harsh afternoon sunlight of Jan. 1. It worked out for Harry (Billy Crystal) in "When Harry Met Sally," but will it work out for you? Is anything ever as glamorous and wonderful as it is in the movies? Therein lies your answer.
New Year's Eve
Walleye's will be open for New Year's Eve - no loud DJ's or bands, just a comfortable atmosphere to have some drinks with a few friends. Complimentary munchies (taco salad, dips and more) will be served as well, so if you're not into the head banging New Year's Eve thing, then come on down to Walleye's, play some Wii and relax. F.Y.I. Walleye's is still having their Happy Hour on New Year's Eve from 6 to 8 p.m. including 25-cent wings, $1 domestic beers, $1 mixed well drinks and $2 top shelf drinks. The remainder of the night, Walleye's will be featuring $2 domestic beers with $2 well drinks and, for Crown and Coke people, $2.50 top shelf drinks (including shots!). The best part: no cover charge.
Ring in the new year at 41 West with drink specials and no cover charge, featuring DJ Mike Christopher, 9 p.m. to 2 a.m.
The Dunkirk Moose (located on Lake Shore Drive West) will have hors d'ouevres at 6 p.m., dinner at 7 p.m., live music by Trio and a champagne toast at midnight. Call 366-5322 for more details.
The Beaver Club has DJ Scoobie from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m., with a champagne toast at midnight.
Nickel Plate Depot (located next to the tracks on Central Avenue in Brocton) will have Stray Kat Karaoke from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m.
The Fireside Manor will be open with a special menu New Year's Eve from 4 to 10 p.m., and on New Year's Day, 4 to 9 p.m.
At Valentine's, for a $5 cover enjoy food, party favors and champagne at midnight.
The Kosciuszko Club will have live music by Lazy Susan from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m.
The Fillmore will have free party favors and a buffet at midnight.
After the ball drops, "The Rocky Horror Picture Show" will be shown at the Reg Lenna Civic Center, 116 E. Third St. in Jamestown, starting at 12:30 a.m. Tickets are $5 pre-sale and $6.50 at the door. Call the Reg Lenna Box Office at 484-7070 for tickets in advance.
And for everyone looking to get the party started one night early, BJ's is having its annual New Year's Eve Eve shindig on Thursday night. There will be party favors, champagne at midnight and miscellaneous revelry. The bar will be closed on New Year's Eve proper.
DRINK OF THE WEEK
My wonderful Aunt Patti spent our family Christmas gathering mixing up the most delicious cocktail, which is my new favorite drink of all time. It's called the "Holly"day Martini, courtesy of the Wegmans website, and can be enjoyed any time of the year. For one drink, you will need: two strawberries, trimmed, chopped, plus one additional, left whole for garnish; two Tbsp. (1 fl. oz.) Wegmans Orange Pomegranate Martini Cocktail Mixer; 1/4 cup (2 fl. oz.) pomegranate juice; three Tbsp. (1 1/2 fl. oz.) citrus vodka; two Tbsp. (1 fl. oz.) orange juice.
Directions: Add two chopped strawberries and mixer to cocktail shaker. Muddle berries well. Fill shaker with ice, pom juice, vodka and orange juice. Shake; strain into a chilled martini glass. Garnish with fresh strawberry.
April Diodato is the OBSERVER Lifestyles editor and can be contacted at email@example.com. She will be on holiday from the OBSERVER headquarters - cheers to a fabulous new year.