Ring in 2018: 8 New Year’s Eve celebrations in Calgary

By Shane Flug

Eighteenth birthdays are significant life milestones – it’s an age that brings newfound freedoms and possibilities. This Dec. 31, Calgarians will head out to mark this century’s 18th spin around the sun – and there's no shortage of ways to do that in our city. Here are eight New Year’s Eve parties in Calgary that cater to eight different walks of life. [Photo credit: istockphoto.com/ca/portfolio/franckreporter]

Ring in 2018: 8 New Year’s Eve celebrations in Calgary

For those with deep hearts (and pocketbooks)

Talk about your hot ticket items. The Calgary Firefighters New Year’s Eve Charity Gala is a black tie ball that supports 13 different charities throughout town. Enjoy a gourmet dinner upstairs and disco party downstairs starting at 8 p.m. Bar service is complimentary and there will be a midnight buffet for those craving seconds.

For those with thick credit card bills

No judgment – most of us seem to go over our Christmas budgets. Fortunately, the City of Calgary has a free celebration in store for the whole family. Enjoy some free hot chocolate, ice-skating, ice carving and local musicians such as Ghostkeeper before the big countdown and fireworks show.

For those with early bedtimes

Midnight can be too long an asking time for little ones to stay up. Fortunately, TELUS Spark has (literally) a popping alternative so the kids don’t miss out. Countdown 12 hours early at their Noon Year's Eve event, featuring a countdown with hydrogen balloon explosions at 11:45 a.m. and a bubble wrap dance party.

For those looking for love

Some think “cuffing season” is a real holiday dating phenomenon, while others believe it’s just pop romance’s wintertime answer to the spring fling. Nonetheless, singles can use this “cuffing” opportunity to find a New Year’s kiss at Arts Commons’ formal Singles New Year’s Eve Gala. Take a local trip to “la ville de la romance” with this year’s “Midnight in Paris” theme. Couples also welcome.

For those who feel a little chaotic

Murder, mayhem, mystery and masquerade mix into one New Year’s Eve dinner theatre event at the Fort Calgary Barracks. Dress in masquerade (semi-formal) and bring your date to the fictional town of Deadwood Lake, a town so ridden with scandal you’ll leave convinced that some people really just shouldn’t party under the same roof.

For those who keep it classical

The holidays are always a great time to take the family to the choir and New Year’s Eve is no exception. Local chamber choir Luminous Voices will be performing works by Francis Poulenc and even Van Morrison at Mount Royal University’s stunning Bella Concert Hall.

For those who like to rock

Being a live music venue in today’s economy can be a challenge, as Distortion found out while successfully campaigning hard to keep the place packed and its doors open this past fall. This New Year’s Eve, show them some support at their year-end roster featuring local hard rock bands for a head-banging New Year's Eve bash presented by Calgary Beer Core. Rural-rooted renegades The WILD! headline with guests Electric Revival, Open Air and A-Bomb.

Eighteen is a number that means boundless newfound freedoms and opportunities. Start 2018 the same way by ringing in the New Year in Calgary your way!

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