Celebrate the Demise of 2020 With These Virtual New Year’s Eve Events

Celebrate the Demise of 2020 With These Virtual New Year’s Eve Events
Photo: Pajor Pawel, Shutterstock

Pandemic or not, people have mixed feelings about celebrating New Year’s Eve. It’s one of those nights when there’s so much pressure to have fun, do something memorable, and “set the tone” for the rest of the year (whatever that means), but sometimes — like right now — a certain year coming to a close is reason enough to celebrate. Of course, all our problems will still be there after the stroke of midnight on December 31, and 2021 will be no picnic, but as humans, we do get some type of satisfaction marking the passage of time.

At this point, it should go without saying that we’re not going to attend a big New Year’s Eve gathering outside of our own household. And no, having a “quiet night in” with a few close friends who you trust (and aren’t part of your household) isn’t a great option either. Fortunately, we have plenty of other ways to ring in the new year that allow us to (virtually) celebrate with other people, but without all the crowds, hassle, and strategic use of public restrooms.

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When COVID-19 emerged and grew into a pandemic in March, most of us weren’t thinking about the potential disruption of the holidays. December’s festivities were nearly a year away, and many people didn’t foresee the uncertainty of March still wedging us apart so many months later, remaining a constant in...

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Sydney fireworks

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As you likely know by now, folks are being strongly encouraged to watch Sydney’s fireworks from their televisions this year. If you’d like to watch the city light up from afar, the ABC will be live-streaming the event from 8:30pm AEDT here.

Times Square ball drop

Photo: lazyllama, Shutterstock Photo: lazyllama, Shutterstock

While the annual New Year’s Eve ball drop in Times Square is still happening this year, it’s going to look completely different — especially since the event is not open to the public. But there will be live performances, including one from Gloria Gaynor, who will sing the unofficial anthem of 2020, “I Will Survive.” Festivities (and the live-stream) kick off at 6 p.m. EST  and ends after the ball drops. Watch it all go down here.

Hogmanay

Photo: Marti Bug Catcher, Shutterstock Photo: Marti Bug Catcher, Shutterstock

Each year, one of the best New Year’s Eve parties takes place in Edinburgh, Scotland. Known as “Hogmanay” — the Scottish name for new year celebrations — is a massive gathering of music, fireworks, and cultural events that will take place entirely online this year, and features an appearance from Dr. Who actor David Tennant. Events for the multi-day festival begin today, and you can watch them here and attend many for free.

An explosion in Las Vegas

Photo: melissamn, Shutterstock Photo: melissamn, Shutterstock

Want to demolish 2020? So does the city of Las Vegas, apparently, which will be ending the year with a virtual “explosion,” including blowing up a 2020 sign right before midnight. You can watch the live-stream here — it’ll be a blast.

Snoop Dogg’s Virtual New Year’s Eve Special

Photo: agwilson, Shutterstock Photo: agwilson, Shutterstock

Ring in the new year with Snoop Dogg at his free virtual event, which also will feature his fellow #GoBigShow judges Rosario Dawson, Jennifer Nettles, and Cody Rhodes. In addition to a performance by Snoop, there will also be a tour of his compound, as well as “surprise cameos by Snoop’s illustrious friends.” The show starts at 11 p.m. EST on December 31. Register here to attend.

Sparklerama

Photo: RSTPIERR, Shutterstock Photo: RSTPIERR, Shutterstock

This year, the Minnesota Children’s Museum’s annual New Year’s Eve celebration has gone virtual and will include music, dancing, activities, and a ball drop — all from the comfort and safety of your own living room. The event is free, begins at 6 p.m. EST and lasts about a half-hour. Register here to attend.

Sober New Year’s Eve

Photo: Leszek Kobusinski, Shutterstock Photo: Leszek Kobusinski, Shutterstock

The folks behind the Sober Grid app — which connects users with other people in or seeking recovery from substance use disorders — are hosting a virtual New Year’s Eve gathering. It will include (virtual) socialising, and games like charades and Pictionary. To attend the event, which lasts from 7 p.m. to 4 a.m. EST, join via this Zoom link, and use the Meeting ID: 253 366 0083.

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When you’re planning a party that’s going to feature drinking, one of the worst things you can do is just not invite your sober friends. Oh, they don’t drink, I don’t want to make them uncomfortable. Let them make that call for themselves. And there’s a lot you can do...

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