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Things to Do

Celebrate New Year’s Eve in New Orleans

New Year's Eve Fireworks
Enjoy New Year's Eve fireworks in New Orleans (Photo: Cheryl Gerber)

New Year’s Eve is a big celebration here in New Orleans. From all-inclusive, hotel-hosted parties, to live music celebrations, to daytime family-friendly events, there’s something to suit everyone. Join us and toast to one of the coolest cities in America, if we do say so ourselves!

Steamboat Natchez in the fog (Photo: Paul Broussard)

Celebrate on the River

Ring in the New Year with a cruise on the river. Steamboat Natchez hosts a New Year’s Eve Fireworks Cruise beginning at 10:30 p.m. on New Year’s Eve. Patrons can enjoy an open bar, holiday-themed dinner buffet, and musical entertainment by a live dance band. Board at the Toulouse Street Wharf and watch the fireworks from your seat on the boat.

For those who love the view of river but would rather stay on land, the city hosts its annual fleur de lis drop at midnight with an accompanying fireworks show on the riverfront. This event is free and open to the public. For more information on the evening’s happenings, check out the Crescent City Countdown Club.

Back this year is Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve broadcast live from New Orleans, including a concert beginning at 9 p.m. on the Riverfront. This year’s performers include Usher and Sheryl Crow. The free show will be broadcast on ABC, but if you’d like to be a part of the crowd, we recommend getting down there early. Celebrations conclude with fireworks at midnight, ringing in the new year.

Downtown New Orleans is home to many New Year’s Eve parties (Photo: Paul Broussard)

Celebrate in Style

Several upscale venues in the city host huge parties that include food, beverages, and live music for adults 21 and older. The biggest party of the evening takes place at the Hyatt Regency hotel on Loyola Avenue in downtown New Orleans. Aptly titled Big Night New Orleans, this event provides a late-night celebration with live music, open bars, and a buffet. This year’s lineup includes Bag of Donuts, Petey Pablo, Big Sam’s Funky Nation, Flow Tribe, and more.

The New Year’s Eve Countdown happens at the Westin Hotel, located in Canal Place, between Canal Street and the French Quarter. This is also an all-inclusive party which comes with a view of the city’s New Year’s Eve fireworks display. This year, the Bucktown All-Stars will be performing live.

The National WWII Museum is a great place to ring in the new year. Head to BB’s Stage Door Canteen for New Year’s Eve celebrations beginning at 9 p.m. With entertainment from Spencer Racca, Dody Piper, and the Victory Swing Orchestra, you’ll be closing out the decade in style. Usher in the new year with a champagne toast and a midnight chocolate buffet.

Landry’s Seafood House in the French Quarter is ringing in the new year in the heart of Jackson Square. Dine, dance, and party with a breathtaking view of the Riverfront fireworks.

Pat O’s on the River hosts a New Year’s Eve extravaganza of its own. Along with a front-row view of the fireworks on the Riverfront, enjoy a premium open bar, a buffet, music from DJ MIG, a photo booth, and more.

Party with the Dirty Dozen Brass Band at The Maison on Frenchmen Street on New Year’s Eve. This three-floor party features a different band playing on each level, along with a premium open bar.

New Year’s Eve at the Ace Hotel New Orleans’ Three Keys will feature a performance from soul legend Lee Fields and his band the Expressions with soul singer Aaron Abernathy opening the show. After the live performance, DJ Felice Gee & Legatron Prime will ring in the New Year with funk and jazz beats. Enjoy bottomless sparkling wine as you dance the night away.

If you want to celebrate in the French Quarter, Bourbon Vieux hosts a New Year’s Eve party and features one of Bourbon Street’s largest balconies. Tickets are all-inclusive, but beware – Bourbon Vieux promises a wild night of celebrating.

Party in style at Bar Marilou inside the Maison de la Luz hotel. Bar Marilou’s New Year’s Eve party will feature an open bar with passed canapes from 10 p.m. to 1 a.m. A live jazz band trio will perform from 9:30-11:30 p.m., before DJ Tristan Dufrene takes over from 11:30 p.m. to 1 a.m. Throughout the night, enjoy various interactive performances including an acrobat duo, Snake Charmer and Burlesque performer Xena Zeitgeist, a contortionist, and Drag Artist MaryBoy.

The NOPSI Hotel is hosting  Great Gatsby-themed rendezvous on New Year’s Eve. Come dressed in your best 1920s attire and ready to dance the night away. There will be a champagne toast and balloon drop at midnight.

A live auction, food stations, and gourmet buffet are highlights of Saffron NOLA’s New Year’s Eve dinner. Cuisine will include Tava Beef Tenderloin, Kashmiri Lobster Bisque, vegetarian options, and dessert. Seating is at 6 p.m., 8 p.m., and 10 p.m. The 10 p.m. seating includes a champagne toast at midnight.

Celebrate with Live Music

New Year’s Eve fireworks on the Riverfront (Photo: Cheryl Gerber)

If you want to ring in the New Year’s with great music, you’ve come to the right place. New Orleans delivers on this in several ways. DJ Soul Sister will host her 17th annual New Year’s Eve Soul Train at the Civic Theater. Patrons can opt for the cover charge only or purchase tickets that include an open bar. The Booty Patrol Dancers and Vintage Soul Train Projections accompany DJ Soul Sister, and the night is complete with a midnight toast. Doors open at 9 p.m., and this party is for adults 21 and over only. Tickets tend to sell out for this one, so get yours early.

If you want to hear some great beats, head to The Fillmore inside Harrah’s Casino for a New Year’s Eve performance from The Revivalists. Doors open at 9p.m. and the show is all ages.

New Orleans favorites Galactic along with Anjelika “Jelly” Joseph and Southern Avenue will host a New Year’s Eve show at Tipitina’s on New Year’s Eve. Doors open at 9 p.m. and this show is open to ages 18 and older.

If you want to ring in the new year with one of New Orleans’ finest brass-bands, don’t miss Grammy Award-winning Rebirth Brass Band at the Howlin’ Wolf in the Warehouse District. Doors open at 10 p.m. and tickets are $85 and include a premium open bar. Patrons must be 21 or older.

The seven-piece band KUWAISIANA combines Middle Eastern influences with traditional Louisiana sounds. They’ll perform a special New Year’s Eve concert at The Starlight in the French Quarter. Catch the show at 11 p.m. Patrons must be 21 or older.

Big Freedia, Boyfriend, and Sweet Crude are the stars of the show at the Joy Theater’s New Year’s Eve Freak Show. Doors open at 9 p.m. and the show is all ages.

children's museum
The Louisiana Children’s Museum (Photo: Paul Broussard)

Celebrate with the Family

If you are celebrating the new year with kids in tow, there are options available for you too.

The annual Zoo Year’s Eve at the Audubon Zoo kicks off at 10:30 a.m. and lasts until 12:30 p.m. The event takes place at the Capital One Stage and Field in the Audubon Zoo. It’s included with admission to the zoo and free to zoo members. Festivities include a toast and lots to explore from onsite exhibitors.

The Louisiana Children’s Museum Noon Year’s Eve is fun for the whole family. Enjoy a brass band second line and special activities like face painting, paper bag hat decorating, and make your own confetti. Ring in the New Year at noon on the Event Lawn with bells, bubbles, and beach balls. The event is from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

New Years in Old Algiers is the perfect family-friendly New Year’s Eve activity. Commemorating 300 years, the Algiers Tricentennial Committee will present a blockbuster afternoon of events featuring entertainment, seafood, and more. At 3 p.m., there will be a UNESCO Site of Memory dedication ceremony marking the arrival of ships carrying enslaved Africans in Algiers as early as 1722. Enjoy the afternoon, then pick your spot on the levee to see the fireworks on the Mississippi River.

This year, in addition to the fireworks display on the Riverfront (mentioned above), the city will celebrate with fireworks in New Orleans East. Stay tuned for more information.

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