How do you want to ring in the New Year?
You can keep it casual or dress to the nines, party on the beach or head to a club. Whatever your New Year’s objective, there’s probably an event that’s just right for you.
We’ve broken out this year’s Santa Cruz New Year’s Eve events into categories to help you find just what you’re looking for:
The Best Way to Stay Active, Listen to Live Music & Ring in the New Year Without Dancing
New Year’s Eve Bowling at Boardwalk Bowl
When: 9:00 PM to 12:30 AM
Where: Boardwalk Bowl
Cost: $119 per lane
This event always sells out so make your reservations early! Your lane fee includes Atomic Bowling, shoe rental, party favors and a glass of champagne or apple cider at midnight.
Local band, Charmas will be playing at Coasters starting at 9:00 PM. Entertainment at Coasters is free but if you plan on bowling then call (831) 426-3324 soon to make reservations.
Dress Up, Dine Out & Party in Style
New Year’s Eve at Hotel Paradox
When: 7:30 PM – 2:00 AM
Where: Hotel Paradox
Cost: Celebration Package: $75 + tax, Dine & Dance Package: $125, Stay & Celebrate Packages also available
Hotel Paradox’s NYE party checks all the boxes if you’re looking for that quintessential New Year’s Eve celebration.
The Celebration Party Package includes a welcome cocktail, a midnight toast and a full night of dancing to the music of Steve Ezzo & The Monterey Bay All Stars in the Sequoia Ballroom, and DJ Athonia in the Solaire Lounge.
Add dinner by upgrading to the Dine & Dancing Package. There are also overnight packages available if you want to crash at the hotel.
1980’s Rockin NYE at Chaminade
When: 7:00 PM – Midnight
Where: Chaminade Hotel & Resort
Cost: Party Only: $135. Overnight packages also available.
The hotel on the hill is going to be celebrating ’80s style on New Year’s Eve. The ‘1980’s Rockin’ NYE Party’ starts at 7:00 with a strolling appetizer and dining experience. Dinner is served from 8pm-10pm and included in the cost of admission is an open bar with beer, wine, champagne and select NYE cocktails.
This NYE event comes complete with a DJ dance party, champagne and a balloon drop countdown to ring in the New Year.
Call the resort directly to make reservations: 831.475.5600.
New Year’s Eve Party at Severino’s
When: 6:30 PM – 1:00 AM; Two seating times
Where: Severino’s Bar & Grill at Seacliff Inn
Cost: $99 per person
Severino’s will host a New Year’s Party complete with fine food, dancing and live music. Rock in the new year with the Billy Martini Show from 9pm-1am.
Dinner and hotel packages are available. For more information, or to make a reservation, call (831) 688-8987.
Beachfront Dance Parties with Local Bands
Extra Large at the Crow’s Nest
When: 9:30 PM
Where: The Crow’s Nest
If you want an unforgettable New Year’s Eve full of upbeat dance music and a classic Santa Cruz experience, then this is it. Local favorites, Extra Large, are sure to keep you boogieing all night long.
Under the Sea New Year’s Eve Party at Zelda’s
When: 9:30 PM
Where: Zelda’s Restaurant
Cost: $10 Cover
Ring in the new year with the ocean as your backdrop, in Capitola Village. Dance the night away at Zelda’s, where they’ll be hosting an Under the Sea New Year’s Eve party featuring reggae music from Nomlakadoja & The Leftovers.
Club Scene: The Best NYE Shows in Santa Cruz
Harry and the Hitmen New Year’s Eve Extravaganza at The Crepe Place
When: 9:00 PM
Where: The Crepe Place
Harry and the Hitmen are a classic Motown-style band with a strong history in improvised rock. If you cannot catch their NYE show, don’t worry, as they will be playing shows at the Crepe Place on the 29th and 30th as well.
FREE New Year’s Eve Party at the Catalyst
When: 9:00 PM
The main show (Devil Makes Three) is sold out, but you can still ring in the New Year at the Catalyst by catching DJ Salatiel in the Atrium. And unlike every other event on this list, this one is FREE!
New Year’s Eve with Don Carlos at Moe’s Alley
When: Doors at 8:00 PM, Show at 9:00 PM
Where: Moe’s Alley
Cost: $35 in advance, $40 day of show
The Best Way to Ring in ’17 Like it’s ’67
China Cats Grateful Dead Tribute at Don Quixote’s
When: 8:00 PM
Where: Don Quixote’s
Cost: $30 in advance, $35 at the door
The China Cats bring their Grateful Dead tribute act back to Don Quixote’s for three (3!) sets on New Year’s Eve. An early acoustic set will be followed by two electric sets. Come early for a Shakedown Street buffet dinner at 6:00 PM.
Additional New Year’s Eve Events and Dinners
- Devil Makes Three @ The Catalyst – SOLD OUT
- Celebrate New Years with Sherry Austin with Henhouse @ Davenport Roadhouse Restaurant & Inn
- New Year’s Eve 2017 @ The Castaways Bar, 3263 Portola Ave., Santa Cruz, CA
- Celebrate the Night in Black and White @ Rosie McCann’s
- Lúpulo NYE Boogie & 2016 Good Riddance Party
- Aquarius at the Dream Inn
- Davenport Roadhouse
- Paradise Beach Grille
- Sanderlings at Seascape Beach Resort
- Sotola Bar and Grill
- Chocolate on Pacific
- Ella’s at the Airport
- El Palomar
New Year’s Day Activities
When: January 1, 2016
Where: California State Parks
Ready to #OptOutside in 2017? Get started on New Year’s Day with a First Day Hike.
Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks has a full list of nine first day hikes to choose from. You can see them all here.
Happy new year and happy trails!