By Brooke Geery
2021 has been a rollercoaster ride of unknowns, evolving science, changing perspectives and hopefully a little personal growth. We now stand on the precipice of 2022, which is unlikely to be any less crazy, so there’s really only one thing to do. Put on your mask (yes, still), break out your vaccine card or negative Covid test, and celebrate! You’re still here and you might as well enjoy it. Whether you’re looking for great food, festive fireworks, local live music or some mind-erasing liquid libations, area restaurants and venues are working hard to provide some much-needed fun this final Saturday night of the year.
Family-friendly celebrations & fireworks
Fireworks at Okemo
LUDLOW—Okemo’s annual fireworks display is on for 2022, with a 9 p.m. start time that will allow you to celebrate with the kids and get to bed in time to grab first chair Sunday morning. Enjoy the show from the Jackson Gore base area. No registration is required.
Fireworks hike at Stratton
WINDHALL—Statton Mountain Resort will provide a pyrotechnic show beginning at 8:30 p.m. and the more-motivated among us have the opportunity to watch from mid-mountain by joining a hiking party. Hikers will meet in the courtyard at 7 p.m. with the hike beginning promptly at 7:30 p.m. The expedition will happen regardless of weather conditions, and children should be at least 12 years old to participate and prepared to spend hours outside in the cold. After the fireworks display, the group will descend the mountain and finish the evening in the Courtyard with a fire and hot chocolate. To register, visit: stratton.com/things…/events/new-years-eve-hike
Fireworks snowshoe tour at Sugarbush
WARREN—Join a guided snowshoe tour, beginning at 5:30 p.m. to the top of Sugarbush’s Gate House Quad to watch the resort’s annual fireworks display. The tour will begin and end at The Farmhouse on Gate House lane, and hot chocolate will be provided in the patrol shack at the top. Cost to participate is $79 with snowshoe rental, $64 without. No pets are allowed. Fireworks begin at 8:30 p.m. and can also be viewed from several locations without hiking. For more information, call 802-583-6590.
New Year’s Eve skate
WHITE RIVER JUNCTION—Ring in the new year on ice at Wendell A. Barwood Arena (45 Highland Ave.). The rink will be open for public skating from 2-4 p.m. In honor of 2022, organizers will be tossing out prizes, serving up refreshments and playing fun music to skate to. For more info, call 802-295-5036.
NYE themed dinner
Liquid Art Coffee House
KILLINGTON—Make your reservations now for a four-course prix-fixe menu, and enjoy it to the sounds of Tee Boneicus Jones at Liquid Art from 5-9 p.m. If you’d prefer to celebrate from home, they’ll also offer the menu for take out. Orders must be placed by noon on Dec. 30 for pickup between 4-4:30 p.m. Cost is $90 per person and take-out orders include splits of bubbly. Reservations are required, so make yours by emailing email@example.com or calling 802-422-ARTS. Liquid Art is located at 37 Miller Brook Road.
RUTLAND—Southside will ring in the new year with a four-course meal, followed by live music and a midnight toast. New England rock and blues band Ghost Train will play from 9 p.m. through 2022 and the bar will be open until 1 a.m. (with snacks available, too). There is no cover charge, but reservations for 4 p.m., 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. dinner seatings can be made by calling 802-772-7556. Southside Steakhouse is located at 170 S Main St. by the railroad crossing.
Mountain Top Inn
CHITTENDEN—Head to the top of Chittenden for Mountain Top’s new seasonal menu and specials for the evening, in addition to their full-service bar and 12 tap beers to choose from. If you arrive early enough to catch the last daylight, you’ll be treated to great views. Reservations should be made in advance by calling 802-483-2311. Mountain Top Inn and Resort is located at 195 Mountain Top Road off Chittenden Road at the Civil War memorial.
KILLINGTON—The Foundry will offer its regular chef-inspired, fine-dining dinner service in the dining room, while local favorite Aaron Audet plays in the Tavern. Reservations are highly recommended for dinner and can be made by calling 802-422-5335. The Foundry at Summit Pond is located at 63 Summit Path off Killington Road.
Huntington House Inn & Doc’s Tavern
ROCHESTER —Dine, dance and stay in Rochester, with dinner seating beginning at 5 p.m. at the Huntington House Inn restaurant. Vaccinated guests should call 802-767-9140 for reservations until 10 p.m. Or if you prefer, head straight to Doc’s tavern for a menu of pub favorites and a performance by the Free Range Band from 9 p.m.- 1 a.m. The Huntington House Inn & Doc’s Tavern is located at 19 Huntington Place.
Parties & live music through midnight
FAIR HAVEN—Tomasi’s Tavern is hosting a New Year’s Eve masquerade ball on Saturday, with snacks, music and prizes for the best costumes. Though dressing up is not required, it is highly encouraged, and sparkles are known to win! For more information, call 802-265-3593. Tomasi’s Tavern is located at 2 Liberty St.
KILLINGTON—The Wobbly Barn will kick off its New Year’s celebration at 4 p.m. with King Arthur Junior’s final 2021 happy hour performance, until 6 p.m. Next up to the stage, the Krishna Guthrie Band will turn things up a notch, infusing rock, blues and modern influences from 6:30-9:30 p.m. At 9 p.m, things will shift to the nightclub, where a New Year’s Eve party ticket is required. With your $80 ticket, you’ll enjoy crowd-favorite Philadelphia, cover band The Benderz. The band’s high-energy show will ensure you make it until midnight, when there will be a complimentary champagne toast. Pre-purchase your tickets through Eventbrite for express lane access from 9-10 p.m. Tickets will also be available at the door while supplies last. Proof of vaccine or negative Covid test within 72 hours will be required to enter. The Wobbly Barn is located at 2229 Killington Road.
KILLINGTON—Pick your poison, with live music emanating from both stages at the House that Rocks Killington. On the main stage, Boston-based cover band Never in Vegas will offer a selection of your favorite hits. In the Crow’s Nest, Jamie’s Junk Show will offer their spin on classic rock, pop and hip hop songs. Tickets for the evening are $80 and proof of vaccine or a negative Covid test is required. The Pickle Barrel is located at 1741 Killington Road.
Mogul’s Sports Pub and Restaurant
KILLINGTON—Catch local punk band Super Stash Bros and Indigenous Entertainment’s Silas McPrior at the “Stash, Grass or Silas” New Year’s Eve Party. Nobody rides for free, but the bands vow to pretend next year will be different all night long. For more info, call 802-422-4777. Mogul’s is located at 2630 Killington Road. Jax Food and Games Killington—Killington’s favorite Nashville duo King Margo takes the stage at 8:30 p.m. for a rockin’ New Year’s Eve with all their friends. Plan on paying a small cover charge, and call 802-422-5334 for more info. Jax is located at 1667 Killington Road.
Du Jour VT
LUDLOW—Celebrate New Year’s Eve with Eric King and the Rustie Bus! The band will play covers and original music from 7-10 p.m. For more information, call 802-975-0667. Du Jour is located at 57 Pond St. off Route 100 in the village.
Clear River Inn and Tavern
PITTSFIELD—Regular tavern service will begin at 3 p.m. at the Clear, but the real action will begin later in the evening with DJ Dirty D’s NYE Party. The Rutland-based Dj will spin all your favorites until the tavern closes. For more information, call 802-746-8999. The Clear River Tavern is located at 2640 Route 100N from Route 4.
New Year’s Day Brunch
KILLINGTON—Congratulations, you’ve made it to 2022, so start the new year off right with a brunch at Killington’s newest brunch spot from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Boston-based Rob Pagnano will be playing while you enjoy New England brunch favorites and a full bar. For more information, call 802-683-2151. The Rivershed is located at 747 Killington Road.