(Attention: Wanting to say goodbye to 2014 and hello to 2015? This is the guide for you.)
Clocksy the clock has polished his bells, and he's ready to party on New Year's Eve. No, that's not a euphemism, you sick weirdoes; he just wants to look his best on the big night. And to help him plan his excursion into 2014, as we do every year, we've assembled a guide to New Year's Eve in San Diego.
Mind you, this is not a comprehensive list. For example, if Clocksy simply wants an early three-course prix-fixe dinner before hittin' the pillow at 10 p.m., there are lots of restaurants doing just that, but for our guide, we chose places that are doing something a little extra—like dinner and dancing till midnight. San Diego is all growned up, and CityBeat doesn't have unlimited space for all it has to offer.
Still, we think we have a pretty good selection for Clocksy—and you—to chose from. So, follow along over the next few pages as we lay it all out in four sections: Drinks, Dinner, Dancing and Performance. But be sure to skim the whole thing, because some events include several of those elements, and events that were placed in one section could easily have been placed in another.
As you'll see in Lindsey Voltoline's artistic dramatization of the progression of Clocksy's evening, there's a lot of alcohol involved, so all the usual "Be safe out there" warnings apply. We want Clocksy's face—and yours—to make it to 2014 without a scratch. We think it's going to be a fine year.
Ask a lot of folks what they're doing for New Year's Eve and they'll tell you they're staying at home, keeping it mellow with their significant other and / or a few friends.
That's what makes the party at Blind Lady Ale House (3416 Adams Ave., Normal Heights) so cool. It starts early (3 p.m., with a toast to the New Year as the clock strikes midnight in Brussels) and ends early (9 p.m., with last call at 8:15). And, as any hip parent knows, Blind Lady welcomes the kiddos, meaning parents can get festive without having to stay up past bedtime.
The theme's Belgian: There'll be a number of Belgian beers on tap, Belgian-beer-glass giveaways*, Belgian appetizers (like BLAH's excellent moules frites) and desserts and maybe even some Belgian tunes.
* Show up at 11:30 a.m., when BLAH opens, to get your paws on one of 100 Belgian stemware glasses. Don't be greedy; this ain't a Best Buy Black Friday sale.
If you want to keep the party going past 9 and a quality drink's the key to your good time, add one of these events to your evening:
Polite Provisions 4696 30th St., North Park. From 8 p.m. to 1 a.m., the cocktail bar puts on what it's calling the "Bourbon & Blues Ball." A ticket gets you two cocktails, entertainment by the Fred Heath Trio and a champagne toast at midnight. The adjoining Soda & Swine will serve food until 1:30 a.m. $60-$70. politeprovisions.com
Quality Social 789 Sixth Ave., Downtown. Prefer your whiskey with a brogue? QS teams up with Tullamore Dew for "Happy Dew Year." Ticket includes an open bar from 9 to 10 p.m. and a midnight toast of your choice of champagne or a Tullamore pickleback. $40. qualitysocial.com
Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens (both locations) 1999 Citracado Pkwy., Escondido and 2816 Historic Decatur Road, Suite 116, Liberty Station. Beer geeks can sample rare and vintage Stone Brewing Co. bottles while enjoying food, live entertainment, a heated outdoor cigar lounge and midnight toast in a commemorative glass. $99. stoneworldbistro.com/newyears
Sycamore Den 3391 Adams Ave., Normal Heights. Everyone's favorite newish dad bar (we mean that in the best possible way) will be serving up its craft cocktails with '70s dance music as a soundtrack. There'll be $35 punchbowls, and a free champagne-cocktail toast at midnight. sycamoreden.com
Tiger!Tiger! 3025 El Cajon Blvd., North Park. Don your best "futuristic" attire and celebrate the New Year in each time zone, starting with a $3 East Coast beer from 8 to 9 p.m., $3 Central beer from 9 to 10 p.m. and so on. tigertigertavern.blogspot.com
U.S. Grant 326 Broadway, Downtown. The hotel's Celestial Ballroom transforms into a 1920s speakeasy with champagne towers, jazz (and some more modern) tunes and craft cocktails. Haul out your best flapper garb for this one. $55-$80. usgrant.net
World Famous 2014 New Year's Eve Pub Crawl Start at Taste & Thirst (715 Fourth Ave., Downtown) and hit up several Downtown locations offering drink specials and other deals to the pub-crawl crowd. $20 and up. californianightlife.com
"Become a better cook," isn't as popular as the "lose 20 pounds" New Year's Eve resolution, but it's a good one and certainly easier to achieve. This New Year's Eve, you can get started on self-improvement a day early and educate yourself at the New Year's Eve Tapas Dinner Party, a cooking-class that ends in a five-star meal (as long as you pay close attention and follow the chef's advice).
The class will be held from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 31, at Sur La Table (1915 Calle Barcelona in Carlsbad). Chef Lucas Stenser will guide guests as they whip up a gourmet tapas menu that includes seared shrimp with tomatoes and saffron, flat bread with piquillo peppers, spicy mussels with chorizo, manchego croquettas and more. The hands-on cooking class ends with each attendee sampling the self-made food, which means you could be eating either the best or worst meal of 2013.
Want someone else to cook you a nice dinner on New Yearís Eve? Here's a bunch of other food options:
BiCE 425 Island Ave., Downtown. Starting 4:30 p.m. the restaurant offers a four-course prix-fixe menu of authentic Italian cuisine from $50 to $85 a person. bicesandiego.com
Café Japengo 3777 La Jolla Village Drive, La Jolla. Housed within the 11-acre Aventine complex, this upscale sushi spot has "dine and stay" and "dance and stay" packages starting at $189. Both include admission to the countdown party at Michael's Lounge, featuring DJs, dancing, dessert buffet and a balloon drop. cafejapengo.com
Craft & Commerce 675 W. Beech St., Little Italy. The craft-cocktail spot puts on its second annual "Black Tie (Or Something Sorta Fancy) Party." There'll be a four-course, prix-fixe menu and two dinner seatings—6 p.m. ($75) and 9:30 p.m. ($90, includes a champagne toast at midnight). craft-commerce.com
Cucina Urbana 505 Laurel St., Bankers Hill. The popular restaurant has three- and four-course dinner menus, as well as live music, champagne cocktails and pairings. $50 for three courses before 6:30 p.m., $75 for four courses after 6:30. cucinaurbana.com
Duck Dive 4560 Mission Blvd., Mission Beach. From 5 to 8 p.m., enjoy "Sinatra & Scotch" dinner specials. From 8 p.m. to close, the Waldo and Friends NYE Showcase will include music, dancing, party favors and a champagne toast. $20. theduckdive.com
Fish Public 4055 Adams Ave., Kensington. Get your seafood fix in a three- or four-course prix-fixe menu or sidle up to the bar if you want to play it fast and loose without reservations. Champagne specials and wine pairings are also part of the menu. $40 for three courses before 6:30 p.m., $55 for four courses after 6:30 p.m. fishpublic.com
Henry's Pub 618 Fifth Ave., Downtown. DJ Jimmy Boykin will provide the musical entertainment while guests dig in to their three-course dinner ($50 for outside tables, $80 for inside) and bottle of champagne. Non-table cover charge is $20 and up. henryspub.com
Jaynes Gastropub 4677 30th St., North Park. Jaynes brings back its "New Year's Eve Feast," a prix-fixe three-course dinner. See website for menu. $65. jaynesgastropub.com
Katsuya 600 F St., Downtown. Starting at 6 p.m. the restaurant offers a four-course menu with a selection of sashimi and sushi for $75 a person. At 11 p.m., the venue transitions into a club with a live DJ, dance floor and bottle service starting at $100. sbe.com/katsuya
La Valencia Hotel 1132 Prospect St., La Jolla. Choose from two dinner seatings—6 to 8 p.m. ($75 for four courses) or 8 to 10 p.m. ($95 for five courses)—then stick around for live music and a countdown in the La Sala Lounge. lavalencia.com
Leroy's Kitchen & Lounge 1015 Orange Ave., Coronado. Cross the bridge to Coronado for a three-course prix-fixe menu and a 9 p.m. champagne toast (for the East Coast's midnight), followed by a proper one at midnight. $55. leroyskitchenandlounge.com
Marina Kitchen San Diego Marriott Marquis & Marina, 333 W. Harbor Drive, Downtown. They're calling it the "VIP Party" for a reason: From 10 p.m. to 2 a.m., you can enjoy an elegant, seven-course buffet (including a caviar tasting and house-made root beer floats) and bottle service. In between courses, the dance floor will be there for you to work off some of those calories. It's $200 per person with a minimum of four people per table.
Marriott Gaslamp 660 K St., Downtown. The party starts at the bottom of the hotel in Soleil@K with a raw seafood bar, street tacos and cocktails and moves up to the Altitude Sky Lounge rooftop bar where you can chow down on fresh-rolled sushi, carving-station offerings and desserts. DJ Miss Dust will spin tunes, and there'll be a champagne toast at midnight. $165. sandiegogaslamphotel.com/nye
Pacifica Del Mar 1555 Camino Del Mar, Del Mar. The early seating (reservations from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. available) includes a four-course meal. $55. The later seating (8 p.m. and later) includes a five-course meal, wine or champagne, party favors and a live DJ and dancing. pacificadelmar.com
The Pearl Hotel 1410 Rosecrans St., Point Loma. Start with a three-course dinner ($59), followed by a no-cover cocktail party starting at 9:30 p.m. with tunes by DJ Dex Diego and a champagne toast at midnight. Room packages available. thepearlsd.com
Rancho Bernardo Inn 17550 Bernardo Oaks Drive, Rancho Bernardo. Enjoy one of two dinner-and-hotel packages. Starting at 5 p.m. Veranda restaurant offers a three-course meal for $48 or $299 if you also want to stay the night. At the other restaurant, Avant, starting at 5 p.m., enjoy a four-course meal for $75 or eat and stay the night for $349. There will be dancing and live music until 1 a.m. at both locations.
Rancho Valencia Resort & Spa 5921 Valencia Circle, Rancho Santa Fe. Enjoy a dinner of four or five courses, starting at 6 p.m. for $95 and 9 p.m. for $125, respectively. Then dance to live music from Tim Wray Duo until 12:30 a.m. Reservations required: 858-759-6246. ranchovalencia.com
Romesco 4346 Bonita Road, Bonita. The Mexiterranean (Mexican-Mediterranean) restaurant features an '80s-themed party with DJs, tapas, mini desserts, a champagne toast and take-home menudo.
Starlite 3175 India St., Middletown. One of San Diego's hippest eateries gives you two choices: a three-course prix-fixe dinner ($45 before 8 p.m, $55 after) or a pre-paid three-drink token for $50. The token and the later dinner seating include admission to a party, fueled by DJ Heather Hardcore, that starts at 9:30 p.m. starlitesandiego.com
W San Diego 421 West B St., Downtown. The W will cook up a four-course prix fixe dinner in its Kelvin restaurant—$130 with wine / champagne pairings, $85 without. For a separate price, starting at $125, the hotel will throw an open-bar Black & White New Year's Party. kelvinrestaurant.com, thewsandiegohotel.com
West Coast Tavern 2895 University Ave., North Park. Executive chef Abe Botello crafted a four-course meal to be paired with your choice of wine or beer. Seatings at 7:30 and 9:30 p.m. will include a champagne toast. $75 per person plus tax and tip. RSVP required. westcoasttavern.com
Westgate Hotel 1055 Second Ave., Downtown. Mad Men might be on hiatus, but its spirit lingers, like at this MM-themed party that starts with a 7:30 p.m. craft-cocktail reception followed by a wine-paired dinner, dancing and a balloon drop and champagne toast at midnight. $179. westgatehotel.com
Looking for a party you don't have to worry about driving home from?
Big Night San Diego at Hilton Bayfront (1 Park Blvd., Downtown) celebrates its 10th anniversary of ringing in the New Year with this all-inclusive blowout bash, which provides a dozen party areas, six dance floors, unlimited food and booze, as well as a place to sleep right next to the action.
Partygoers can roam the massive waterfront hotel, beverages in hand, getting down in different dance-club atmospheres and listening to live bands.
DJs include Kristina Sky, Glimpse, Happee, Deejay Al, J.Louis, Retep and Eric Love. Indie band Gone Baby Gone will play their dancey grooves. For Latin-music fans, Agua Dulce will jam with their jazz-, soul- and funk-influenced rhythms. For blues-rock fans, the JT Douglas Band will perform. The party starts at 9 p.m. and goes until 3 a.m. Tickets include all food and drinks and cost $110 to $240 (subject to increase).
If that's not your cup of tea, here are lots more ways to get your groove back on Dec. 31:
Air Conditioned Lounge 4673 30th St., North Park. The bar hosts its annual "Masquerade Ball" with DJ Junior at the helm. Complimentary masks will be provided. Knock back a free shot of Ole Smoky Moonshine and a midnight champagne toast, then immediately regret doing it. $30. airconditionedlounge.com
Analog 801 Fifth Ave., Downtown. DJ Cheyenne Giles takes over the 1s and 2s for the '70s-themed bar's "Nu Disco" shindig featuring a light show, laser-light countdown and midnight disco-ball drop.
Bamboo Lounge 1475 University Ave., Hillcrest. The "Glitter and Gold" party features DJs, dancing, party favors and a free champagne toast. No cover. sdbamboolounge.com
Bar Pink 3829 30th St., North Park. DJs Junior the Discopunk and Vaughn Avakian ring in the New Year with a special edition of "Neon Beat" that includes a champagne toast. $10. barpink.com
Bluefoot Bar & Lounge 3404 30th St. in North Park. Dance the night away at the neighborhood bar's "NYE #Jam" with DJ Peso. No cover. bluefootsd.com
The Brass Rail 3796 Fifth Ave., Hillcrest. Wired and Rivalry bring their "R-Night: For Girls, By Girls" party to the gay bar for a night featuring DJs Kiki and Laszlo, go-go dancers and a midnight champagne toast and balloon drop. thebrassrailsd.com
Bristol Hotel 1055 First Ave., Downtown. The 12th-floor ballroom features a retractable roof, and the "Midnight Kiss" party includes top-40 DJs, a six-hour open bar, room packages and more. $100 and up. californianightlife.com
Catamaran Resort 3999 Mission Blvd. in Pacific Beach. VAVi Sports and Social Club is throwing a beach party with a lineup of Sleeping Giant Music's biggest DJs, including Artistic, Fresh One and Chris Cuts. They'll man the wheels of steel in four rooms and an outdoor party area. VIP tickets include admission to a party boat loaded with party favors and stocked bars. $129-$159. newyearsevesandiegoparty.com/beach
Double Deuce 528 F St., Downtown. From 7 p.m. to 2 a.m., the Gaslamp club presents its "Get Buckin' Wild" party, featuring DJs Jiffy and Rodeo, mechanical-bull riding, bar-top dancing and party favors. $20-$25. doubledeucesd.com
El Dorado Cocktail Lounge 1030 Broadway, Downtown. Veteran party starters Saul Q and Adam Salter tap into Martin Scorsese's Casino with a '70s-Vegas-themed party, "Stardust New Year's Eve." Bonus points if you wear a fat-Elvis suit. $15-$20. eldoradobar.com
F6ix 526 F St., Downtown. This swanky hip-hop club puts on a bash with Dre Sinatra laying down the beats. Enjoy a champagne toast as 2014 arrives. $15-$45. f6ixsd.com
FLUXX 500 Fourth Ave., Downtown. DJ Karma spins the party jams as special guest Rico DeLargo blows the trumpet at the club's circus-themed "New Year's Big Top Extravaganza." $60-$70. fluxxsd.com
Four Points by Sheraton Hotel 8110 Aero Drive, Downtown. The hotel will host the five-room, festival-style blowout "We Are NYE 2014," with a lineup of EDM DJs to keep the raging going 'til the wee hours. Room and dinner packages are available, as well as free parking and shuttle service. $40-$79. wearenye.com
Hard Rock Hotel 207 Fifth Ave., Downtown. Put your dancing shoes on and groove to three floors of music by Sidney Samson, Eva Simons, Tony Arzadon & Chris Garcia, DJ Loczi, Scooter & Lavelle, Starry Eyed Music and DJ Fingaz. $75, $100 at the door. hardrockhotelsd.com
Hotel Indigo 509 Ninth Ave., Downtown. The posh hotel's two venues, Level 9 and Table 509, host their second annual party featuring an open bar, appetizer stations, party favors, champagne toast at midnight, DJs and dancing. $100 per person, $185 per couple. hotelinsd.com
House of Blues 1055 Fifth Ave., Downtown. HOB is throwing a Great Gatsby-themed party, with DJ sets from Battlestar Massive, DJ Melo-D, Ed Roc and Julz, plus music from Andrew Garcia, a $1,000 balloon drop and complimentary appetizers. $25, $45 at the door. houseofblues.com/sandiego
Jasmine Seafood Restaurant & Lounge 4609 Convoy St., Kearny Mesa. Fill your belly at the seafood buffet, then dance the calories away to old-school and R&B jams spun by DJs T-Bone and Dnyce. smoothjazznation.com
Jolt'n Joe's 379 Fourth Ave., Downtown. DJs GiGi and Stick D will get you on the dance floor, and an open bar and $2 street tacos will make sure you're fully fueled through the night. $60. joltnjoes.com
Kava Lounge 2812 Kettner Blvd., Little Italy. Step onto the dance floor and slip into the future with some beat-heavy sets from Omega Squad, Austin Speed, Arkon, Sarah Cranberry and Gage b2b and Joey Animals. Plus, get treated to a special New Year's Eve menu of tasty treats. $10. kavalounge.com
Live Wire 2103 El Cajon Blvd., North Park. Have a cold beer with warm friends, and then go wild on the dance floor as DJ Marsellus Wallace spins '70s, '80s and '90s jammers. Totally free. livewirebar.com
LOUNGEsix 616 J St., Downtown. The heated rooftop bar features live music, dancing, party favors and a complimentary midnight toast. $25-$30. jsixrestaurant.com
The Merrow 1271 University Ave., Hillcrest. Add a little bit of intrigue to your New Year's Eve with a mermaid-themed masquerade ball. There will be DJs, dancing, a complimentary champagne toast at midnight, plus champagne and bottled-beer bucket specials. $7 if in costume, $12 if not. facebook.com/TheMerrowSD
Moonshine Flats 344 Seventh Ave., Downtown. Get down with the countdown Diddy-style at this new club's "White Party." A long lineup of DJs, including Donald Glaude, Tantrum, Kray-Z-K and Discotech Panda, will keep the bash going strong. There's currently a ticket deal on Living Social going for $60. Search for it and save on your revelry. But you must wear all white. whitenye.com
New Year's Eve Yacht Party 2014 1800 N. Harbor Drive, Downtown. Your ticket aboard this three-level luxury yacht includes dancing to DJs Demon, Chris DeVoy, Who and Paulo Da Rosa, appetizers served until midnight, gourmet donuts with a variety of dipping choices and a glass of champagne served upon arrival. $169. newyearsevesandiegoparty.com/yacht
Onyx Room / Thin 852 Fifth Ave., Downtown. Rage into the New Year in three party rooms equipped for your booty-shakin' pleasure. Sip on complimentary cocktails from 8 to 9 p.m., and then partake in a midnight champagne toast and a balloon drop. $20. onyxroom.com
Porto Vista Hotel 1835 Columbia St., Little Italy. The boutique hotel hosts a "New Wave New Year's Eve," an '80s-themed affair with music, rooftop access, fireworks and an option to take advantage of a prix fixe menu at The Glass Door. $35 and up. facebook.com/PortoVistaSD
Rooftop 600 at Andaz Hotel 600 F St., Downtown. The dance party at the nightclub formerly known as the Ivy will feature a long lineup of DJs, including Ayla Simone, Brady Spear, Huy Believe, Engage, Hot Mouth and Alex Kenji. Room packages are also available. $40. rooftop600.com
Sandbar Grill 718 Ventura Place, Mission Beach. This casual beach party includes half-price drinks, DJs, dancing, free champagne at midnight and a special $10 VIP cover for folks who work at nearby businesses. $20. sandbarsportsgrill.com
Side Bar 536 Market St., Downtown. A Great Gatsby-themed affair with DJs and dancing. $20, or $50 for VIPs. sidebarsd.com
Spin 2028 Hancock St., Midtown. Two rooms will be available for your New Year's Eve needs. Room 1 has party jams spun by DJs D-Rock, Mr. Hek and Grove Boy, while Room 2 is all mellow reggae vibes from DJ Reggie, Winston T and Lucky. $20 before midnight. spinnightclub.com
Stingaree 454 Sixth Ave., Downtown. DJs Fashen and Kaos drop the fist-pumping jams while Sex Panther releases musical pheromones on the roof top all night long. Bottle service is available. $50 pre-sale. stingsandiego.com
Tango Del Rey 3567 Del Rey St., Pacific Beach. Run away and join the circus for one night only at this Cirque du Soleil-style masquerade. The fancy ball calls for semi-formal to formal attire, so leave your spaghetti-stained sweatpants at home. $75. tangodelrey.com
U31 Cocktail Lounge 3112 University Ave., North Park. U31's keeping it simple this year with dancing to the sounds of DJ Bacon Bits and friends. u31bar.com
Urban Mo's 308 University Ave., Hillcrest. The lively gay hotspot will have all-you-can-eat spaghetti and show-tunes karaoke from 5 to 10 p.m. and then a dance party with DJ John Joseph. No cover.
Venga Venga Cantina & Tequila Bar 2015 Birch Road, Suite 710, Chula Vista. Celebrating its first New Year's Eve, the high-end Mexican restaurant features a midnight "12 Grapes of Luck" ceremony and complimentary champagne toast. As the tradition states, eating a grape at the ringing of each bell will result in a prosperous new year. Guest can party in the New Year dancing to Latin beats. richardsandoval.com
Viejas 5000 Willows Road in Alpine. The casino goes buck wild with a "Fire & Ice" extravaganza featuring live performances on the outdoor stage, DJ 2-Rille spinning in the DreamCatcher Showroom, food and drink specials all night, a ball drop and more. Room packages available. $10. shopsatviejas.com
Whiskey Girl 702 Fifth Ave., Downtown. Resident DJs Marc Thrasher and Romeo drop the house music until 2 a.m., preceded by a gourmet buffet dinner from 7 to 9 p.m. $40. whiskeygirl.com
Whistle Stop Bar 2236 Fern St., South Park. Booty Bassment, the Whistle's hip-hop party, returns for another round of ball-dropping. DJs Dimitri and Rob will spin the rump-shaking jams. $10. whistlestopbar.com
If you prefer a little ringing in your ears when you ring in the new year, there are plenty of options to catch live music in San Diego on Dec. 31. Sure, you could go have a fancy prix-fixe meal, or gather with thousands of people Downtown, but sometimes a dark, cozy and uproariously loud dive bar is the way to go.
Soda Bar (3615 El Cajon Blvd., City Heights) will host a very special reunion show featuring darkly psychedelic indie rockers Scarlet Symphony. The group, founded in 2000 by brothers Josh and Zach Wheeler, have broken up at least three times, but the band is playing together again for the first time in three years.
Joining Scarlet Symphony are San Francisco goth 'n' roll outfit Zodiac Death Valley and soulful indie-pop group Hills Like Elephants. Tickets are $15 in advance, $20 at the door at sodabarmusic.com; might be worth getting them early so you'll have a few extra bucks for a refreshing Christpuncher.
But if that's not exactly what you had in mind for New Year's Eve, here are some more recommendations for ways to spend the evening:
American Comedy Co. 818 Sixth Ave, Downtown. Stand-up heavyweight and two-time New York Times bestselling author Jim Norton helps you laugh in 2014 with two performances—7 p.m. and 10 p.m.—to cover the countdown on both coasts. Admission, including dinner, party favors and a champagne toast, is $70. americancomedyco.com
Balboa Theater 868 Fourth Ave., Downtown. Feel like laughing until your gut sprouts an ulcer? Then spend New Year's Eve with veteran comedian Paula Poundstone. $25-$42.50. sandiegotheatres.org
Belly Up Tavern 143 S. Cedros Ave., Solana Beach. Vibe out to The Expendables' fusion of punk-rock and reggae sounds. Seedless will also perform. $45, $50 at the door. bellyup.com
The Casbah 2501 Kettner Blvd., Middletown. Los Angeles rockers Terraplane Sun are bringing some bluesy, soulful and hard-rocking jams to a bill that also includes singer/songwriter Jackson Price. $20. casbahmusic.com
Hilton La Jolla Torrey Pines 10950 N. Torrey Pines Road. The hotel's ballroom will host party band Wayne Foster Live Entertainment, plus a live cooking station, passed appetizers, dessert and cocktails. Three free cocktails, party favors and a midnight champagne toast are included in the ticket price. $125 and up plus $10 self-parking or $15 valet. hiltonlajollatorreypines.com
The Lafayette 2223 El Cajon Blvd., North Park. From 8 p.m. to 1 a.m., The Casbah takes over the historic hotel, with live bands—Dead Feather Moon, Ziggy Shuffledust, Low Volts, In Motion Trio and more. $25, with room packages starting at $229. casbahmusic.com
Lips 3036 El Cajon Blvd., North Park. The drag queens pull out all the stops and present their "Third Annual Masquerade Ball," including masked drag shows and dinner. Early seating starts at 6:30 p.m. ($15 food minimum and $10 cover) and midnight seating starts at 9:30 p.m. ($49 includes a three-course dinner, party favors, champagne toast and post-midnight dance party). lipssd.com
Martinis Above Fourth 3940 Fourth Ave., Hillcrest. Enjoy a four-course dinner and live jazz by the sexy, all-male string quartet Well Strung. Multiple seatings. $150. martinisabovefourth.com
Seven Grand 3054 University Ave., North Park. The upscale whiskey spot's becoming quite the live-music venue. Celebrate 2014 with psych-rockers Wild Wild Wets, Barbarian and DJ Barry Thomas. Keeping with the "wild" theme, there'll be Wild Turkey specials and a whiskey toast at midnight. sevengrandbars.com
Til-Two Club 4746 El Cajon Blvd., City Heights. Have yourself a noisy little punk-rock party with a headlining show from San Pedro El Cortez, who'll be joined by Go Go Lords, Sailing Stones and The Pheasants. $7. tiltwoclub.com
Tin Can Ale House 1863 Fifth Ave., Bankers Hill. Get raw and noisy with a blend of hardcore and metal courtesy of Portland's Raw Nerves. Age of Collapse, Sleep Walk and Piglife also play. $5. thetincan1.wordpress.com
Tower Bar 4757 University Ave., City Heights. From Scars, Pageripper and Caskitt throw down for a hardcore-punk party. $5. thetowerbar.com
Valley View Casino Center 3500 Sports Arena Blvd., Sports Arena. "OMFG!" is back with another two-day EDM extravaganza (Dec. 30 and 31), featuring Boys Noize, BRAZZABELLE, Bro Safari, Cole Plante, Diplo, DJ Snake, Feed Me, GTA, Henrix, Laidback Luke, Madeon, Nero, Nervo and Ookay. $164, $304 VIP.
Victory Theater 2558 Imperial Ave., Logan Heights. Join the circus freaks of Technomania for a night, beginning at 8 p.m., with DJ dancing, a bar and several live musical acts, including Duckmandu and his punk-rock accordion. $20. technomaniacircus.com
WorldBeat Cultural Center 2100 Park Blvd., Balboa Park. Achieve higher states of consciousness at "Alternative New Years 2014." Join a healing drum circle, get treated to African music and dance and participate in Hatha yoga. No cover, voluntary donation suggested. worldbeatcenter.org