Some people don't think much of New Year's Eve. They leave work and go home to a quiet, peaceful household where they eat a low-calorie dinner, watch some televised pre-celebratory revelry and get to bed early, oblivious to the loud, sparkly, possibly illegal things happening outside.
Those people apparently wish not for liberation, but for the rest of us, here's a breakdown of all that's going down around midnight on Friday, Dec. 31.
High rollers will find both succor and satisfaction at:
• A $260-per-person room-and-ringing-in at The Broadmoor (1 Lake Ave., broadmoor.com). The pinkest building in town not named La Casita trots out its 25-piece Broadmoor Pops Orchestra for this black-tie extravaganza, where your entrance fee gets you a one-night stay and the chance to rub elbows with people standing too close to you.
• The Sterling & Sapphire Gala at DoubleTree Hotel World Arena (1775 E. Cheyenne Mountain Blvd., 576-8900). Get there at 7:30 p.m. to pre-party at Maxi's, the hotel restaurant, then drink and dance to the grooves of Phat Daddy and the Phat Horn Doctors. Later, some balloons will fall on you. It's $65 per person to party, but if you and another want a room, too, to act out your baser desires, that package deal is $159 per couple.
• The Antlers Hilton (4 S. Cascade Ave., coloradospringsnewyearseve.com) and Major Mandolin's New Year's Eve Ball. Hosted by Tron Simpson from KCMN-AM 1530, this televised-by-somebody-to-somebody party features a hot air balloon rise, sight of the fireworks atop Pikes Peak, and a gigantic TV to watch the countdown in Times Square. You'll also get dinner, dancing and more for your $18 to $70 per person (with military discounts available).
• The New Year's Eve Train with the Royal Gorge Route Railroad (401 Water St., Cañon City, royalgorgeroute.com). Tickets, which include a three-course meal and Champagne, are $79. The ride goes from 6:30 to 9:30, so you can still plan for another party afterward. Having ridden the train back in June, we can vouch for the quality of the food, which is surprisingly excellent. The ride's fun, the service and drink list top-notch, and the views impressive, especially from the open observation car. Plus, passing under the Royal Gorge Bridge on Dec. 31 brings good fortune in the new year. (Not true.)
For those seeking a slightly more artistic bent, there's:
• Cruising to Exotic Places at the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center (30 W. Dale St., csfineartscenter.org). Tickets ($69 to $119) get you access to a variety of things, including dining, dancing, gallery tours, champagne, a cruise-ship setting and karaoke.
• The sonorous tones of the Colorado Springs Philharmonic partnering with Colorado Springs Conservatory alumni to present Broadway in Blue. Tickets are $18 to $57, and the show starts at 8 at the Pikes Peak Center (190 S. Cascade Ave., csphilharmonic.org). Fans of eating should note there's a dinner available at 6:30 for $35.
• Mr. Guffaw's New Year's Eve & Weekend at the Manitou Art Theatre (1367 Pecan St., themat.org). For just $10 per person, Mr. Guffaw promises to bring special guests to help kids and family ring in the new year with "ridiculous buffoonery and magical mayhem."
And for those seeking the ordinary or the unusual:
• There are too many restaurants offering special NYE prix fixe menus, and too many bars throwing big parties, to list here. So call your favorite places and ask them what they're planning. Two spots we feel we should mention briefly: Stargazers Theatre & Event Center (10 S. Parkside Drive, stargazerstheatre.com) will rock out with 6035 from 9:30 p.m. to 1 a.m.; $22 tickets include an appetizer spread. Front Range Barbeque (2330 W. Colorado Ave., frontrangebbq.com) will host Broken Spoke and Grass It Up during roughly the same hours at no charge to you, with food and drink specials.
• A wholesome New Year's Eve can be had at the open-to-all, entirely free Family Night at the Springs Church (1515 Auto Mall Loop, thespringschurch.com). Beginning at 7, enjoy a rock climbing wall, indoor skate park, Velcro wall, dodgeball, a bounce house, an obstacle course and more, all at the site of the former Phil Long Expo Center. Then, at 10:30, Christian rockers Sonic Flood will take the stage. Popcorn, cotton candy and snow cones are also gratis, while drinks, hot dogs and other treats will be sold to benefit Springs Rescue Mission.
• Who wants to win a trip to Vegas? Knowing that you probably won't win, who wants to party anyway? That's the spirit. This New Year's, say it in salsa. And by that, I mean dance your ass off at Latin Quarters Nightclub (1865 N. Academy Blvd., lqnightlife.com) between 9 p.m. and 3 a.m. Entry is $15 a head or $25 a couple and includes entry into that Vegas drawing, free eats, a Champagne toast, a balloon drop and the aforementioned booty shakin'.
• Lastly, for another atypical NYE celebration, head to Pranava Yoga Center (718 N. Weber St., pranavayogacenter.com) for its free, second annual silent meditation between 9:30 and 11:30 p.m. (when the doors shut) to be followed by a midnight chanting session; cookies and chai tea, both vegan, provided.
The people standing on the medians on Powers Blvd are insane.
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