Even homebodies who prefer to hit the hay by 8 p.m. the whole year long can’t resist the lure of New Year’s Eve. It’s a night of resolutions, old-year farewells and some really good parties. Revelers can welcome the new year in an assortment of ways this year:

For some friendly rockin’ rivalry, there’s the New Year’s Eve Clash of the Titans at State Theatre, 609 Congress St., Portland. Zach Jones & Friends take on hits of the 1960s against The Lucid & Friends tackling the ’70s versus Grand Hotel & Friends with classics of the ’80s. The new year really should be brought in with a fist in the air and some Cyndi Lauper. Doors open at 8 p.m.; the music starts at 9. Tickets are $15 in advance and $20 day of show. 956-6000; statetheatreportland.com

Celebrants seeking tradition — yet something entirely nontraditional — can find both at the sixth annual Sardine and Maple Leaf Drop in Eastport. At 11 p.m., a maple leaf will be lowered from the Tides Institute & Museum of Art in Bank Square. At midnight, down goes the 8-foot-long Great Sardine. Many local restaurants and activities will keep folks occupied while they await the new year. 853-4047; www.tidesinstitute.org

Classy guys and gals can dress to impress at the Black Cat Ball at Mariner’s Church, 368 Fore St., Portland. Local band Wavelength will perform, and the room will fill with a bevy of hors d’oeuvres and party favors. Attendees can sample wine, hit the cash bar, pose in the photo booth and clink their champagne glasses as the balloons drop at midnight. They can also hit up the psychics for a 2011 preview. The event starts at 8:30 p.m. Tickets are $50, and will be available at the door. 772-3599

Local desserts, local music and a bit of funk entice folks who just want to get down while the clock counts down. ICING: SPACE Gallery’s New Year’s Bash, 538 Congress St., Portland, includes performances by Lady Zen, Dylan Blanchard, Over A Cardboard Sea, Kate Cox and Matt Rock. Add the moves of Portland’s Dirty Dishes Burlesque Review, a champagne toast and local sweets, and you’ve got yourself a party. The event starts at 8 p.m. Tickets are $50. www.space538.org

Rustic Overtones and Gypsy Tailwind. Enough said. The trombone, the saxophone, the mandolin! Catch these two well-loved bands in one night during a New Year’s Eve event at Port City Music Hall, 504 Congress St., Portland. The festivities begin at 8 p.m. Tickets cost $25 in advance and $28 at the door. ($50 for VIP seated). Tickets are available at www.portcitymusichall.com and all Bull Moose locations.

Sometimes, simplicity works best. The Asylum, 121 Center St., Portland, will ring in the new year with the aptly named “The Party,” featuring Wells rapper Spose, who’s still riding high off the success of last spring’s Top 40 Billboard hit, “I’m Awesome.” Joining him will be Cam Groves, Sidecar Radio, Educated Advocates and Restless Groove. There will be drink and food specials and a champagne toast at midnight. Admission is $30; doors open at 8:30 p.m. 772-8274; portlandasylum.com

Here are more New Year’s Eve options:


“Club Texas New Year’s Eve Party” with music by DJ B and Veggies by day. $15. Club Texas, 150 Center St. 784-7785


“Downtown Countdown” at various locations downtown with music, movies and comedy, plus a midnight ball drop on the square. Most events are free. www.downtownbangor.com

“Red Carpet New Year’s Eve” with reality TV stars Jordan Lloyd and Jeff Schroeder (“Big Brother,” “The Amazing Race”) and music from ’70s cover band Motor Booty Affair. Free. Music starts at 9 p.m. Hollywood Slots Hotel & Raceway. (877) 779-7771; www.hollywoodslots.com


“New Year’s by the Bay,” a family celebration in various Belfast locations includes children’s activities, music, a drum procession and a midnight bonfire by the bay. All-inclusive buttons cost $15 for adults and $5 for students (free for children under age 5). Downtown Belfast. www.nybb.org/index.html


“New Year’s Eve at Bethel Historical Society” with a potluck supper, a dragon parade, a candlelight open house, refreshments, a sing-along and marshmallow roasting. Free; donations accepted. 5 to 10 p.m. www.bethelhistorical.org


“L.L. Bean’s New Year’s Eve Celebration,” a family-friendly event featuring jugglers, artists, a winter campfire, the Wear and Wave Art Extravaganza and Rick Charette performing children’s music. Events begin at 11 a.m. Hot cocoa and fireworks at 6 p.m. All events are free. L.L. Bean, Main Street. (877) 755-2326; www.llbean.com

“New Year’s Eve Show” with music by Blues Dogz, an appetizer spread and a champagne toast at midnight. $20 per person; $30 per couple. Doors open at 8 p.m.; music at 9 p.m. VENUE, 5 Depot St. venuemusicbar.com


“New Year Celebration of the Arts” at various venues downtown featuring barbershop harmony to sacred music, drum circles, magic and comedy. There will be a midnight countdown and fireworks display. Admission buttons cost $7 and are available at Gorham Hannaford. www.newyeargorham.org


“First Night OOB,” featuring a beach bonfire at 4:30 p.m. with marshmallow toasting, music and hot cocoa. A silent auction will be held at The Brunswick, 39 W. Grand Ave. Fireworks will be at 6:15 p.m. and midnight. www.oob365.com


“A Lucid New Year’s Eve,” with music from The Modest Proposal followed by a community jam. Bring your instruments. Door prizes and raffles. Starts at 6 p.m. $5. Lucid Stage, 29 Baxter Blvd. 899-3993; www.lucidstage.com

“Racks’ Chic and Classy New Year’s Eve Ball,” Italian buffet at 6 p.m. for $10, free pool until 8 p.m. and DJ X until 9 p.m. Dance to the Ken Grimsley Band. $10 per person; $15 per couple. Rack’s Sports Bar and Grille, 272 St. John St. 773-3466; www.portlandracks.com

“New Year’s Eve with The Mallett Brothers and Marion Grace” with special guests Holy Boys Danger Club. $10 admission includes a whiskey toast at midnight. Doors open 8 p.m. Empire Dine and Dance, 575 Congress St. 879-8988; www.portlandempire.com

“New Year’s Planetarium” with Sky Dome theater shows, lectures and a midnight countdown. donation. 7 p.m. to midnight. University of Southern Maine (Southworth Planetarium), 96 Falmouth St. 780-4249; usm.maine.edu/planet

“New Year’s Eve with Paul Cataldo,” Americana/roots music, reservations recommended. 9:30 p.m. Andy’s Old Port Pub, 94 Commercial St. 874-2639; andysoldportpub.com

“New Year’s Eve at Grace” with wine, music and a balloon drop. Benefits the Center for Grieving Children. $10. 10 p.m. Grace, 15 Chestnut St. 828-4422; www.restaurantgrace.com

“New Year’s Eve at VENUE,” with bands Dirigo and The Project, free food and a champagne toast. $15. Doors open at 6 p.m. for dinner; music starts at 9 p.m. VENUE Music Bar & Grille, 865 Forest Ave. 899-4350; venuemusicbar.com

“New Year’s Eve Bring It On” with music from Dark City. Free admission before 9 p.m.; $5 after. Flask Lounge, 117 Spring St. 772-3122; www.flasklounge.com

“Polar Bear Plunge” benefiting the Natural Resources Council of Maine. Participants hit the water at noon and must raise a minimum of $50. East End Beach. [email protected]; www.nrcm.org


“Gala on the Point,” with Jim Ciampi & The Cityside Events Band and a buffet dinner. Desserts and a champagne toast included. Tickets cost $79.95 or $100 for mezzanine. Doors open at 7 p.m. The Landing at Pine Point, 353 Pine Point Road. 730-5511; thelandingatpinepoint.com

Staff Writer Shannon Bryan can be contacted at 791-6333 or at:

[email protected]


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