What is (and isn’t) happening around the DC area this New Year’s Eve

New Year’s Eve on Friday was supposed to be the celebration to send an up-and-down year off right. And then the Omicron variant RSVP’d for the party.

Now, if you don’t know what’s happening and what’s not, fear not, eager champagne toaster, we have the answers.

Multiple events have been canceled around the area due to rising COVID-19 case numbers.

In Virginia, that’s mainly been family-friendly events such as Watch Night in Falls Church, Noon Year’s Eve in Vienna and First Night in Alexandria (though fireworks over the Potomac are still on).

Across the river in D.C., Hamilton Live’s New Year’s Eve concert and Black Cat’s New Year’s Ball have also been called off. The same goes for Maryland festivities such as Baltimore’s New Year’s Eve Spectacular in the Inner Harbor and the in-person portion of Annapolis’ New Year’s Eve event (fireworks are still on).

We’ll all be sure to raise a glass in these events’ honor, because there’s still plenty of ways to have fun for Friday night’s holiday. Let’s take a look:


Round up the tykes to watch a giant donut — rather than a ball — descend as part of Krumpe’s Donut Drop in Hagerstown’s Public Square. The event is free and will run 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Or if you want to tucker them out with some arts and crafts, the Maryland Science Center’s Midnight Noon event (which goes from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.). Be aware: This event will cost some dough, as well as stomach, for play-dough and other fun trinkets.

The St. James athletic complex in Springfield, Virginia, is also hosting its own “Noon Year’s Eve” event. Kids 2 and under get in free, but other ticket prices max out at $37.

If you’re really trying to put the kids to bed early, you can take them to the Launch Trampoline Park in Herndon for two hours of jumping plus a few other goodies. Tickets cost $40.

Party animals

You can start the day’s festivities off right by getting started early at Vanish Brewing’s British New Year’s Eve party in Leesburg. An 11 a.m. start time will make sure you’re keeping pace with our friends across the pond — including a ball drop at 7 p.m. local time (but midnight in Britain). The cover is $10.

Mission Navy Yard is hosting its New Year’s Eve party at a slightly reduced price ($125 rather than $150) for the full experience, but that experience packs a lot — including a 4-hour open bar.

If you prefer a rooftop over the waterfront, then Sauf Haus Bier Hall’s event in Dupont Circle will be rocking through the night. Tickets max out at $60, but be prepared: proof of COVID-19 vaccination or a negative test will be required for entry to the event.

Music lovers

Cover bands are all the rage, and 80s retro band The Legwarmer’s annual show at The State Theatre in Falls Church never disappoints. Similar to Sauf Haus, be sure to bring your vaccine proof or a negative test (they won’t accept at-home rapid tests). Tickets will run you $59 for entry.

Rainbow Kitten Surprise — three words I never thought I’d say in sequence — will be performing at The Anthem in D.C. If you’re into that, then its $50 to get in.

If you want something more relaxed musically, then check out Colors: R&B Only at The Fillmore in Silver Spring. Admission is, at the lowest, $80. And as is the case elsewhere, be ready with your vaccine proof or a recent negative test.

Fancy Schmancy

If you’re really looking to class up your entrance into 2022, then hit up the Kennedy Center’s event A Jazz New Year’s Eve. Vaccine proof is required to get in, as is shelling out anywhere from $79 $109.

And if 2021’s been extra good to you and you just want to blow your party wad, then you can’t miss the 6th Annual NYE Gala at the Andrew Mellon Auditorium in Downtown D.C. Lowest entry price is $200, but you’re doing it big this year, so why not shell out the $2,500?

Matthew Delaney

Matt Delaney is a digital web writer/editor who joined WTOP in 2020.

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