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The new year is nearly upon us and, if you haven’t already, it’s time to start thinking about how to usher in 2018 (and kiss 2017 goodbye). Whether you keep it family-friendly, spend the night out on the town, or do a little of both—there are a host of festivities in the Mile High City.
In addition to the annual downtown fireworks and one of the country’s largest New Year’s Eve dance parties, we’ve rounded up a few other ways to ring in the new year:
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With The Kids
12th Annual Budweiser Extreme Rodeo Challenge
Enjoy an evening of bareback riding, bull fighting, and mutton busting—aka, a kid-friendly version of bull riding, in which children ride sheep—to close out 2017 country-style. VIP Tickets include floor seats, an unlimited buffet, and a bar. 7:30 p.m.; Budweiser Events Center, 5290 Arena Cir., Loveland; $17-$32 or $112 for VIP
Kid’s New Year’s Eve Party at Mici’s Handcrafted Italian
Bring the family to one of Mici’s four Colorado locations for a pre-midnight countdown and Italian dinner. Kids can eat off the Bambini menu for $4, choosing from a selection of pizzas and pastas, with gelato and Italian cookies for dessert. Plus, every table gets pizza dough balls to play with, noise-makers, and other party favors to ring in the new year. Countdown starts at 6:59 p.m.; find your closest location here.
Zoo Year’s Eve
Face painting, princess meet and greets, and magic shows—all with a DJ spinning tunes all night long (until the 9 p.m. countdown), will make this a night to remember for kiddos heading into 2018. The Denver Zoo’s New Year’s Eve event is also the last night for Zoo Lights, so this is a great opportunity to check it out before it ends. 5:30—9 p.m.; Denver Zoo, 2300 Steele St.; $10-$15
Support Colorado Sports
Head to the Colorado Avalanche vs. New York Islanders game, which will feature the Avs’ first-ever indoor fireworks show. Game starts at 6 p.m. Buy tickets here (prices vary); Pepsi Center. Or spend the last day of 2017 at the Sports Authority Field at Mile High for the Denver Broncos vs. Kansas City Chiefs matchup—the last game of the year for the Broncos. Tickets here.
Leave The Kids At Home
Bar Helix’s “Intercourse(s)” Party
One of the hottest bar openings of 2017 will close out its successful year with a sexy-themed party, featuring top-shelf champagne and vodka cocktails, each served with a small plate companion. Sip on boozy punch, enjoy the midnight toast, and take advantage of the night’s spread of “late night drunk food.” Tickets $150 plus tax and gratuity; RSVP by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org; 720-449-8587; 3440 Larimer St.
New Year’s Eve On The Rocks
Ring in 2018 at the Red Rocks Amphitheater New Year’s concert. It’s the first time the iconic venue will be hosting an event like this, but there’ll be no shortage of stars: Migos, Post Malone and Young Thug are headlining, but other hip hop stars, like Lil Yachty, will be there, too. 5:10 p.m.—2 a.m.; Red Rocks Amphitheater, 183000 W. Alameda Pkwy, Morrison; Tickets start at $175
Union Station’s New Year’s Eve Parties
Denver’s Union Station will host three different events on New Year’s Eve, each suited to different tastes. Head to the Great Hall Light Show and Silent Disco ($50 in advance, $75 at the door) for a night of dancing to three different DJs and culminating in a spectacular ceiling light show at midnight. Those looking for a more extravagant evening should head to the VIP Lower Level Lounge Party ($150 in advance, $175 at the door), which will feature canapé treats and complimentary drinks. And for those wanting a night of romance, the NYE Countdown in the Cooper Lounge ($75, reservations required) will have a selection of bites to snack on and complimentary Veuve Cliquot. Purchase tickets here, or call 720.460.3738 to reserve a spot at the Cooper Lounge; Denver Union Station, 9 p.m.–1 a.m.
NYE Great Gatsby 16th White Rose Gala
Sold out for 15 years in a row, this year’s White Rose Gala will feature a Roaring ’20s theme, so bring out your art deco suits, dresses, and ties for this night of ballroom dance exhibitions, flapper girls, and other performers. 1101 13th St., 9 p.m.—1:30 a.m., $79–$99, get tickets here.
On The Spot: A New Year’s Eve Improv Show
Head over to the Bovine Metropolis Theater for this special, end-of-the-year improv show. Attend an early evening show or the later one, both will end in time for guests to catch the downtown fireworks shows (at 9 p.m. and midnight). The Bovine Metropolis Theater, 1527 Champa St.; $25–40, get tickets here.
Where To Dine
…On New Year’s Eve:
Try Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steakhouse for an elegant four-course prix fixe menu and champagne toast at midnight, in addition to their regular menu. The night will also feature oysters and pearls with caviar mignonette, paired with two glasses of Veuve Clicquot champagne for $56. Reservations recommended; 303-976-0100; 8100 E. Orchard Rd.
Or head to Postino, where you’ll be able to take advantage of all-day happy hour prices ($5 glasses of wine or pitchers of beer), and enjoy a charcuterie and cheese platter or bruschetta board for your last bite of 2017. Open until 10 p.m. on New Year’s Eve; 2715 17th St.; 303-433-6363
…On New Year’s Day:
Jumpstart your 2018 resolution at Olive and Finch and enjoy their healthy brunch options. The cafe will be offering a special throughout January: Show any gym membership card and get any juice half off. 3390 E. 1st Ave.; 303-832-8663
But if you wake up needing a heartier meal (to fight off the hangover), head to brunch at Punch Bowl Social, for menu items like their popular mushroom biscuits and gravy. 65 Broadway; 303-765-2695