NEW YEAR'S EVENTS
New Year's Even Main Street Live: Main Street, Bradenton
A special Main Street Live will be 5 p.m.-midnight Dec. 31 featuring live music by Lauren Mitchell Band, and arts and crafts. The event is free and open to the public. Food and beverages are available for purchase. Proceeds benefit the revitalization of downtown's merchants and culture.
Sarasota New Year's Party and Pineapple Drop: Downtown Sarasota
Sarasota's New Year's Party is 1:30 p.m.-1 a.m. Dec. 31. Children's rides and games can be found on State Street. At 8 p.m., Doug Deming & The Jewel Tones will hit the stage at Lemon Avenue and First Street. Bob Harrigan will be stationed at Main Street and Lemon Avenue as he counts down to midnight with the Pineapple Drop. Information: sarasotanewyearsparty.com.
Ritz-Carlton Sarasota New Year's Block Party: Ritz-Carlton, 1111 Ritz-Carlton Drive, Sarasota
Toast goodbye to 2013 and welcome 2014 at the Ritz-Carlton block party 8 p.m.-1 a.m. Dec. 31 featuring live music and dancing all night long. Tickets $55, include favors and a glass of champagne. Information: 941-309-2000 or ritzcarlton.com.
"Let's Make a Deal!" New Year's Eve Celebration: Sarasota Players Theater, 838 N. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota
Beneva Fruitville will host a playful evening of games and entertainment 9;30 p.m. Dec. 31. The event is for adults only. Tickets: $25. Information: 941-365-2494 or theplayers.org.
New Year's Eve: Pier 22, 1200 First Ave. W., Bradenton, is holding a buffet and cash bar 9 p.m.-1 a.m. Dec. 31 including a champagne fountain and mini burgers at midnight along with music and party favors. The Arch entertains with live music throughout the evening and to usher in the new year. Price per person is $59.95 plus tax and gratuity. Pier 22 also plays host to an all-inclusive New Year's Eve ballroom celebration that features an open bar, buffet with a variety of delectable appetizers, salads, entrée's, sides, desserts, champagne toast and mini burgers at midnight. Price is $99.95 plus tax and gratuity. Reservations required by calling 941-748-8087. The full party menu can be found at pier22dining.com.
New Year's Eve Celebration: Polo Grill and Bar, Lakewood Ranch Main Street, is having a New Year's Eve Celebration with seatings at 5:30 and 7:30 p.m. Dec. 31. Ring in 2014 with a four-course prix fixe meal, party hats, trinkets and more. Menu is posted online: http://bit.ly/1bRK76Y. Cost $55 per person for the early seating and $75 for the second. Seatings include a complimentary glass of champagne and admission to the Polo Lounge for music and dancing with DJ Phame. Reservations available online at pologrillandbar.com or by calling 941-782-0899, ext. 2.
Louies Modern New Year's: Ring in the New Year with dinner specials including wood-grilled porterhouse steak for two dinner ($65/two people) and Maine lobster pot pie for $32. Advanced reservations strongly recommended online at louiesmodern.com or by phone at 941-552-9688. Complimentary parking is available in the Palm Avenue Garage above the restaurant.
Libby's Café + Bar New Year's: Libby's New Year's Eve features party favors, dinner, appropriate entertainment until 10 p.m, Dancing with a DJ starting at 10 p.m., midnight champagne toast. New Year's Day Brunch includes a 50-plus ingredient Bloody Mary and mimosa bar as well as ala carte brunch menu beginning at 10:30 a.m. The restaurant is a 1917 Osprey Ave., Sarasota. Reservations highly recommended a online at libbyscafebar.com or by phone at 941-487-7300.
Café L'Europe New Year's: Two packages are offered for New Year's Eve -- A dinner with seating from 5 to 7 p.m. or a special gala-style dinner beginning at the 9 p.m. dinner, enjoy an elegant dinner prepared by the culinary team at L'Europe. The $50 cover charge after 9 p.m. includes live music by a dance band, party favors, balloons, hats, noisemakers, streamers and Champagne toast at midnight. Reservations strongly suggested; call 941-388-4415 or visit cafeleurope.net.
Sixth annual Shamrock Shiver Charity Plunge: Gulf Drive at 12th Street South, Bradenton Beach
The sixth annual Shamrock Shiver Charity Plunge at noon Jan. 1, followed by a Post Plunge Party at Clancy's, 6218 Cortez Road, Bradenton. There will be door prizes and live music by the Jack Tamburin Band. Food and beverages available for purchase. Proceeds will benefit Caring for Children Charities. Information: 941-952-1109.
Tow to go: Anheuser-Busch and Gold Coast Eagle Distributing is providing a free Tow to Go program to help keep Manatee-Sarasota highways safe during the New Year's holiday. Gold Coast Eagle Distributing, along with Anheuser-Busch and AAA, are the sponsors of Tow to Go, a free tow service and a ride home to those who may have had too much to drink through Jan. 1.
The number is 855-286-9246.
Tow to Go guidelines:
Confidential local ride within a 10-mile radius to a safe location
Free and available to both AAA members and non-members
The AAA tow truck takes the vehicle and the driver home
Tow trucks can take up to two people home; if there are more people in your party, you will need to make other arrangements to get home safely.
You can't make an appointment to use the Tow to Go service, it is designed to be used as a last resort so have a designated driver before you have your first drink.
It may be necessary, in certain situations, for AAA to contact a cab company or local law enforcement to assist with getting the intoxicated individual a safe ride.