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Area New Year's Eve activities set

New Year

WORTHINGTON -- Community members will usher in the New Year with a costume party, a balloon drop, karaoke, dinner specials and the annual Snow on the Porch variety show Thursday.

"We're going to ring in the New Year with a balloon drop," said Louise Rients, manager at The Ground Round. "I'm not sure how many balloons we're going to have. We'll have party favors, we'll have champagne and dinner and special table decorations."

The balloon drop is usually the highlight of the evening. Management and staff blow up the balloons and place them in a giant net on The Ground Round ceiling. Once the balloons are dropped, they don't usually last long, Rients said, but The Ground Round is the only local place to go to participate in a balloon drop.

Dinner reservations for New Year's Eve at the restaurant had already begun pouring in by Monday.

A&T Tap will host a special costume party on New Year's Eve. Prizes will be awarded for the best costumes, and hot chocolate, drink specials and food specials wil be offered in honor of the night.

"(The costume party) is just fun to do," said Craig Sailor, owner of the A&T Tap. "People get a kick out of it. I get a kick out of it."

Sailor was glad the holiday fell on a Thursday night this year. When New Year's Eve falls on a Monday or a Tuesday, people tend to cut back on their celebrations, but when it's on a Thursday and people have New Year's Day off, they don't have to worry about working for the next few days.

"And police will be running the (Safe Cab program), so nobody will have to drive home. That helps a lot, too," Sailor said.

Many other businesses and clubs are hosting New Year's celebrations:

- The Elks will offer free Tom and Jerrys to its customers and will also have a choice of walleye or a 12-ounce sirloin steak specials.

- The Worthington Veterans of Foreign Wars Club will have karaoke with Virgil Reed.

- "Snow on the Porch VIII: Live! It's the Lars Swullivan Show" will begin at 7:30 p.m. at the Memorial Auditorium Performing Arts Center in Worthington. The box office is open from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.; phone 376-9101.