Music

New Year’s Eve

Kiss 2018 goodbye

Wednesday, December 26, 2018

Raise your hand (go ahead, do it. No one will mind) if you’re ready so say a big, fat, forever farewell to 2018. Some years are better than others, but if your 2018 was an especially rough one, well, you’re in excellent and bountiful company.

Because I am neither a psychic nor a visitor from the future, I have no idea what 2019 holds for any of us. But it’s hurtling toward us every second, so the only thing to do is to cross our lucky bits and hope for the best.

Well, that’s not the only thing to do.

Although you might be tempted to hole up, hunker down and be in bed by 9pm on New Year’s Eve, I believe it to be our duty to give this year the sendoff it so thoroughly and richly deserves.

It’s time to kiss 2018 goodbye and I’m only too happy to give you some ideas as to where to do so.

Boundary Bay Brewery is the originator of and home to many of our hyperlocal holiday traditions. In Times Square, they have the ball drop at midnight. At Boundary, they lower a lighted keg. I’m sure Times Square thinks its ball is impressive, but I’m guessing it was never full of award-winning beer. Advantage: Boundary. What New Year’s Eve at Bellingham’s original brewpub is a Western-style bash, complete with line dancing led by Char of Lynden Line Dancers, a delicious barbecue dinner, and a champagne toast for the aforementioned midnight keg drop. Rustle up some cowboy boots and lasso a ticket while they last. Where: 1107 Railroad Ave. Info: http://www.bbaybrewery.com

Owing to the fact that they might one day save my life, when a firefighter asks me for a favor, it behooves me to say yes. In this case, the favor was an easy one: He wanted me to tell you that, for the first time in its 120-year history, the Bellingham and Whatcom Country Firefighters Community Ball will take place on New Year’s Eve. The semi-formal, Gatsby-themed event happens at the Holiday Inn & Suites, and along with the calendar shift, those behind the ball are wanting to encourage the non-firefighting, non-lifesaving public to attend as well. To entice you, they’ll roll out a literal red carpet, Baby Cakes and Otto-Matic Mobile DJ will provide the music, and the Bellingham Firefighters Pipes and Drums Band will lead a champagne toast and sing-along of “Auld Lang Syne” at midnight. I’d further like to point out that the party is at a very nice hotel, so after it ends, you have no need to go anywhere but to the room you’ve booked. Where: 4260 Mitchell Way Info: http://www.BfdBall.firecat53.com

For every person who wants to don fancy duds and have an elegant New Year’s Eve, there’s someone like me who just wants to down a couple of Jell-O shots and watch a dude light his drums on fire. Luckily, the Shakedown and Daikaiju exist to meet this very particular set of needs. Daikaiju is a kaiju-themed surf-rock band that plays in Bellingham frequently, and the reason why might have something to do with how familiar one of its band members looks. Other than that, all about Daikaiju is shrouded in mystery, but when a band creates a spectacle as big and bombastic as they do, I don’t much care about their origin story. Joining them on what is not the least-weird lineup I’ve ever seen is Kurly Something and Lonebird. Step one: Buy ticket. Step two: Ring in a rowdy New Year. Step three: Rule 2019. Where: 1212 N. State St. Info: http://www.shakedownbellingham.com

Somewhere on the News Year’s spectrum between semi-formal Gatsby ball and shirtless surf rockers in masks falls the Wild Buffalo. They’re another of Bellingham’s venues that has traditionally seen holidays as an excuse to throw big parties of all kinds. They’ve traditionally seen non-holidays in the same way, come to think of it. I guess when you have a venue like that, any reason to celebrate will do. But New Year’s Eve is a big one and they’ve booked their talent accordingly. Polyrhythmics will brave the I-5 corridor to bring their well-honed blend of funk, Afrobeat, soul, jazz and just about every other related genre you can imagine. Willdabeast will open the show and he’s promised to bring new material to ring in the New Year. All you need is a champagne toast—or a shot of tequila—at midnight. Where: 208 W. Holly St. Info: http://www.wildbuffalo.net

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