Tap your toes and raise your glass with Jake Speed and the Freddies at ARNOLD'S BAR AND GRILL, which offers a crawfish/shrimp buffet, music, party favors, sandwich buffet at midnight and champagne toast. Seating will be limited to 80 people. 8 p.m. Dec. 31. $40. 210 E. Eighth St., Downtown, 513-421-6234.
Catch a wave New Year's Eve with Tommy Tsunami & the Suicide Surfers at BEER SELLAR, which also offers food, drinks, party favors and a champagne toast. 9 p.m. Dec. 31. $15 in advance, $25 at the door.
30 Riverboat Row, Newport, 859-431-6969.
Join the Mad Youth party crowd at BELUGA for complimentary sushi and champagne all night. 7 p.m. Dec. 31. $50. 3520 Edwards Road, Hyde Park, 513-533-4444. Get your tickets (including group discounts) via [email protected].
BROWN DOG CAFÉ has a four-course New Year's Eve dinner for those looking for something a little more quiet. 5-10 p.m. $65. 5893 Pfeiffer Road, Blue Ash, 513-794-1610.
CARLO AND JOHNNY offers a selected menu of favorite dishes, live music at 9 p.m. from Soul Pocket and a balloon drop at midnight. 7 p.m. Dec. 31. 9769 Montgomery Road, Montgomery, 513-936-8600.
The Rusty Griswolds headline New Year's Eve at JEFFERSON HALL for the third straight year. Ticket includes an appetizer buffet, champagne toast and party favors. 7:30 p.m.-2 a.m. Dec. 31. $25. Newport on the Levee, Newport, 859-491-6200.
MCFADDEN'S has an "07 on 7th" New Year's Eve party with a buffet dinner, party favors and champagne toast at midnight. Suggested attire is white for men and black for women. 8 p.m.-2:30 a.m. Dec. 31. $30 per person or $50 per couple in advance. 19 E. Seventh St., Downtown, 513-621-6800.
Join Mix 94.1 and MCHALE'S HOSPITALITY GROUP for a rolling hors d'oeuvre buffet and open bar at two different locations in Northern Kentucky. 8 p.m.-1:30 a.m. Dec. 31. $55 advance, $60 at the door. The Gardens of Park Hills, 1622 Dixie Hwy., Park Hills; Marquise Banquet and Conference Center, 1016 Town Dr., Wilder. 859-442-7776.
MESH is offering a five-course dinner for two, live music and a champagne toast, plus a shuttle to the Hampton Inn & Suites and an overnight stay. 5 p.m. Dec. 31. $299 (reservations required). 6200 Mulhauser Road, West Chester, 513-777-7177.
Mount Lookout's party bars, MILLION'S and MT LOOKOUT TAVERN, offer a New Year's Eve starting with an appetizer buffet, party favors, 10 drink tickets, champagne toast, door prizes and music from Funky G & the Groove Machine at Million's. The action moves to MLT at midnight. $35 in advance, $40 at the door. 3212 Linwood Ave., Mount Lookout, 513-871-1148.
DJs on two different floors will keep the vibe flowing at MOUNT ADAMS PAVILION, with Hip Hop, Funk and Rock in the Champagne Room and House Music in the Penthouse. Ticket includes an hors d'oeuvre buffet and a champagne toast. 8 p.m. Dec. 31. $20 in advance. 959 Pavilion St., Mount Adams, 513-744-9200.
Stop by THE STAND in Mount Lookout Square for a New Year's Eve celebration featuring an hors d'oeuvre buffet and a champagne toast. 8 p.m. Dec. 31. $10 in advance. 3195 Linwood Ave., Mount Lookout, 513-871-5006.
Come as your favorite James Bond character and count down to "007" at VINYL's "Licensed to Thrill" party featuring a four-course seated dinner, live Jazz, guest DJ, three gaming stations, champagne and open bar. Dinner seatings: 6 and 8:30 p.m. Dec. 31; party: 9:30 p.m.-2 a.m. Dinner: $57-$77; party only: $67. 1203 Sycamore St., Over-the-Rhine, 513-898-1536.
After the Bengals crush the Steelers at Paul Brown Stadium, walk over to the newest bar downtown, WHISKEY DICK'S, for their New Year's Eve festivities — party favors, music and finger foods with a celebratory toast. Watch the ball drop on their 20-foot TV screen. All day/night Dec. 31. Free admission. 700 Pete Rose Way, Downtown, 513-421-6200.
Are you ready for some football? Get your New Year's Eve started early with the CINCINNATI BENGALS' final game of the regular season, when they face the archrival Pittsburgh Steelers with playoff hopes in the balance. The game is sold out, but you can probably get a ticket if you try hard enough. 1 p.m. Dec. 31. Paul Brown Stadium, Second and Elm streets, Downtown, 513-621-TDTD.
Get dressed up and join the elegant crowd at the CINCINNATI SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA's annual New Year's Eve concert, "Puttin' on the Ritz." Erich Kunzel conducts the orchestra in a program of music by Irving Berlin, Cole Porter, George Gershwin and others, with guest vocalists and tap dancers. The concert is followed by a gala ball featuring a full-course dinner catered by The Phoenix in the Music Hall Ballroom. 7:30 p.m. Dec. 31. $18.50-$77 concert; gala tickets include the concert: $168.50-$277. Music Hall, 1241 Elm St., Over-the-Rhine, 513-381-3300.
Have an Old Country New Year's Eve with the friendly GERMANIA SOCIETY folks, who will be offering German and English sing-along tunes, food and a cash bar. 8 p.m.-1 a.m. Dec. 31. $15 per person or $25 per couple. Germania Klub Haus, 3529 W. Kemper Road, Forest Park, 513-923-1055.
The Beach Waterpark's HOLIDAY FEST offers the New Year's Eve Family Celebration on Dec. 31 featuring noisemakers, party hats, a balloon drop and fireworks. If you reserve in advance, you can also enjoy a New Year's buffet dinner. 3-10 p.m. Dec. 31. $20 for four people; buffet dinner ticket is separate ($12 adults, $6.95 children). 2590 Waterpark Dr., Mason, 513-398-SWIM.
KNOW THEATRE OF CINCINNATI celebrates the end of a memorable first year in its new home with a "007 New Year's Eve Party" featuring live music downstairs, a DJ upstairs, casino gambling, dinner by the bite, raffle prizes and cash bar. 8:30 p.m.-1 a.m. Dec. 31. $35 (also $70 VIP tickets available). 1120 Jackson St., Over-the-Rhine, 513-300-5669.
Acclaimed bluesman Delbert McClinton headlines a New Year's Eve show at the MADISON THEATER, also featuring Delbert's son Clay and G. Miles & The Hitmen. Ticket includes appetizers, party favors and complimentary champagne. 8:30 p.m. Dec. 31. $55-$60 in advance. 730 Madison Ave., Covington, 859-491-2444.
Wild stuff at the SOUTHGATE HOUSE with Unknown Hinson and Stardevils in the ballroom and Straw Boss in the lounge. 10 p.m. Dec. 31. $12 in advance, $15 at the door. 24 E. Third St., Newport, 859-431-2201.
Local hero Noah Hunt, formerly of Uncle Six and more recently the vocalist for the Kenny Wayne Shepherd Band, returns to STANLEY'S PUB with his band/pals, The 420 All-Stars, on New Year's Eve. Jon Justice Band opens. 9 p.m. Dec. 31. $10 in advance. 323 Stanley Ave., Columbia-Tusculum, 513-871-6249.
Dec. 31 is the final day of the annual DUKE ENERGY HOLIDAY TRAINS in the lobby of the CG&E Building downtown. Dozens of model trains operate around the 1,000 feet of HO scale track — a Cincinnati holiday tradition not to miss. Noon-5 p.m. Dec. 31. Free. CG&E, 139 E. Fourth St., Downtown, 513-287-1500.
While you're downtown Dec. 31, stop by Fountain Square to check out the Bengals-Steelers game on the giant video board above Macy's and then try your luck on the FOUNTAIN SQUARE ICE RINK. It's the newest addition to the redeveloped square and, what a coincidence, it happens to be the same size as the famous rink at New York City's Rockefeller Plaza. At night, the video board will feature a countdown to midnight, followed by fireworks. Noon-1 a.m. Dec. 31. $2 to skate, $2 to rent skates. Fountain Square, Fifth and Vine Sts., Downtown, 513-621-4400.
Direct from Broadway, two-time Tony Award winner Chita Rivera showcases the dazzling new musical CHITA RIVERA: THE DANCER'S LIFE that celebrates her astonishing career. Ms. Rivera is joined by a cast of Broadway's most talented singers and dancers for this unforgettable performance. 1 and 6:30 p.m. Dec. 31. $20-$55. Aronoff Center for the Arts, 650 Walnut St., Downtown. 513-241-SHOW.
Swing by Cincinnati Zoo on Dec. 31 and catch one of the final nights of the annual FESTIVAL OF LIGHTS, which features more than 2.5 million twinkling lights and 100 lighted displays throughout the zoo grounds. You can also indulge in fresh-baked cookies, hot chocolate and more goodies as you stroll. 5-9 p.m. Dec. 31. $12.95 adults, $10.95 seniors, $7.95 children 2-12. 3400 Vine St., Avondale, 513-281-4700.
Krohn Conservatory is open Dec. 31 to show off its HOLIDAY FLORAL SHOW, which features decorated live trees in themed colors as well as garden railway trains. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Dec. 31. Free. 950 Eden Park Dr., Mount Adams/ Walnut Hills, 513-421-5707.
The Cincinnati Museum Center offers its annual HOLIDAY JUNCTION display on Dec. 31, featuring a wonderland of toy trains run by local collectors and model train clubs. 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Dec. 31. Included with Cincinnati History Museum admission: $7.25 adults, $6.25 seniors, $5.25 children 3-12. 1301 Western Ave., West End, 513-287-7000.
Oscar Wilde's THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING EARNEST isn't a holiday play at all, but it's a lot of fun — and Cincinnati Shakespeare Company is presenting it through Dec. 31. It's one of the wittiest plays ever written, with some wonderful characters, memorable comic confrontations and lots of lines you'll remember and quote. 2 p.m. Dec. 31. $24 adults, $20 seniors, $18 students. 719 Race St., Downtown, 513-381-BARD.
The Newport Aquarium keeps its "scuba Santa" busy through year end at SANTA'S WATER WONDERLAND. Shows are scheduled throughout the day from 11 a.m. until 4 p.m. $17.95 adults, $15.95 seniors, $10.95 children 3-12. Newport on the Levee, Newport, 859-261-7444.
Ensemble Theatre of Cincinnati closes its musical story of the Ugly Duckling, UGLY DUCK, on Dec. 31. The fable has been transformed to a journey of self-discovery by holiday writing partners David Kisor and Joe McDonough. 2 p.m. Dec. 31. $32 adults, $29 students/seniors, $16 children 12 and under. 1127 Vine St., Over-the-Rhine, 513-421-3555.