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Year in, year out

Want to rock with the Red Elvises? Or polka with the German-American Society? Have a day of family fun or an elegant night out? Take your pick for New Year's Eve.

By Times staff writer
© St. Petersburg Times
published December 27, 2001

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Everybody seems to make plans for New Year's Eve, whether it's sitting home in front of the TV or dancing the night away in evening wear. Here's a sample of some of the big doings around the Tampa Bay area. You're sure to find more in your favorite restaurants, hotels and clubs.

Family fun, day and night

TECO Energy Parade, Ybor City: With more than 30 marching bands and a pep rally for the Outback Bowl by college marching bands, plus fireworks. Parade steps off at 5:30 p.m., fireworks at 8:15 p.m. (727) 446-9352. First Night, St. Petersburg.

Lowry Park Zoo: "Noon" Year's Eve celebration for kids with games, hats, arts and crafts and entertainment including Shana Banana, Radio Disney, members of the Tampa Bay Devil Rays, Lightning and Mutiny. Includes a countdown to noon, with an apple cider toast. 9:30 a.m.-1 p.m. Mon. at the zoo, 1101 W Sligh Ave., Tampa. All activities are included in admission price of $9.50 for adults, $8.50 seniors and $5.95 ages 3-11. Each paid adult can get one child admission free with coupon from Web site, (813) 935-8552.

Welcome the year in style
Lots of people are staying home to ring in the new year, gathering in small groups to raise a glass on New Year's Eve or having open houses Jan. 1. However you celebrate, we wish you a happy 2002.

January at a glance

2002: Year at a glance

Tampa Bay Lightning: Hockey game against the Toronto Maple Leafs at 7:30 p.m. with free post-game party with bands, drink specials and "safe zone" for kids, on the Chrysler/Jeep Plaza. 401 Channelside Drive, Tampa. Game tickets $8-$80. (813) 301-6600.

Busch Gardens Celebrate Safe: DJs will spin discs throughout the park, and Mpress and Prymary Colorz will perform. Fireworks. Non-alcoholic event. 8 p.m. -- 1 a.m. Tickets are $29.95 at the gate; $25.95 advance; $15.95 for Passport members. Call (813) 987-5777. Busch Gardens, Tampa.

Big night out

[Times file: 1999]
Hundreds of luminarias light the labyrinth display during first night celebration in downtown St. Petersburg.
Crown Hotel: Dinner, dancing to orchestra, 1 a.m. breakfast, room and morning breakfast at the Inverness landmark hotel. $259 per couple or $150 without room and breakfast. Toll-free 1-888-856-4455.

Hilton St. Petersburg: Party with dinner, dancing and other entertainment. 7:30 p.m. to 1:30 a.m. $60 single, $100 couple or $229 including room and breakfast buffet for two. (727) 825-7018.

Rock Crusher Canyon: The Crystal River venue hosts a dinner, dance, entertainment and fireworks. Early-bird seating, 3 p.m. $29.95 or 7 p.m. celebration $49.95. 275 S Rock Crusher Road, Crystal River. Toll-free 1-877-722-2696.

Safety Harbor Resort & Spa: Dinner, dancing and champagne. 8:30 p.m. to 1 a.m. $125 per person. (727) 726-1161.

TradeWinds Island Resorts: All-night party with dancing, open bar and food, along with DJ Bobby Rich of WMTX-FM 100.7 at the resort on St. Pete Beach. $75. Special room rates available. (727) 562-1290.

Pop music

The Coliseum: The grand ol' ballroom in St. Petersburg hosts rootsy folk-rockers Donna the Buffalo in a WMNF-FM event. The show starts at 9 p.m., and the Coliseum is BYOB. Tickets are $30 advance, $40 at the door. (727) 892-5202.

Skipper's Smokehouse: Siberian surf rockers the Red Elvises once again will lead the New Year's celebration at the long-time Tampa outdoor music haven. With Urbane Cowboys. 9 p.m. $40. (813) 977-6474.

Cultural events

Ruth Eckerd Hall, Clearwater: Salute to Vienna with waltzes, marches, ballets and operettas in the spirit of the original New Year's concert of the Vienna Philharmonic. With a cast of 75 musicians, singers and dancers, including the Strauss Symphony of Canada, soprano Livia Galambos, tenor Ontoniel Gonzaga and dancers of the Sarasota Ballet of Florida. 8 p.m. $39-$55. (727) 791-7400.

[Publicity photo]
Get into the spirit with Spirit of the Dance: The New Millennium at Van Wezel Hall on New Year’s Eve.
Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall, Sarasota: Spirit of the Dance: The New Millennium with the Irish International Dance Company. 9 p.m. $40-$55; New Year's Eve gala package at Van Wezel with preferred seating and post-show party with buffet, dancing and champagne toast, $120; toll-free 1-800-826-9303.

Detective Dinner Theatre: Where There's a Will, There's a Way . . . to Murder!, Belleview Biltmore Resort & Spa, 25 Belleview Blvd., Belleair. 7:30 p.m., includes production, four-course meal, music by DJ from 10 p.m.-1 a.m., champagne toast at midnight, and party favors, $99.95. RSVP required: (727) 742-7457.

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