Millennium hype triggered plenty of New Year's Eve events a year ago. Conversely, the comparatively pedestrian prospect of ringing in 2001 seems to be contributing to fewer New Year's Eve events this time around.
The local concert schedule appears particularly sparse, which may reflect, in part, the tepid response to some New Year's Eve shows a year ago.
Nevertheless, there are many special events and activities available for those looking to get out of the house on New Year's Eve. The following is a sampling of some of the ways Southern Californians can celebrate what many agree is the real start of the new millennium.
Fairs and Festivals
New Year's Eve on the Promenade will offer a full-scale carnival with games and food and beverage vendors from 1st to 3rd streets in downtown Long Beach. There will also be performances by seven bands on two stages. Walter Trout & the Free Radicals, Teddy Morgan & the Pistolas and James Intveld will be among the featured musical artists. 6 p.m.-12:30 a.m. In advance, $25. At the door, $30. (562) 495-5959.
Live entertainment, children's activities and a fireworks finale will highlight the 10th annual First Night Fullerton celebration. The festivities will feature nearly 25 events staged at numerous sites in the streets, sidewalks and buildings of historic downtown Fullerton. 7 p.m.-midnight. Free. (714) 738-3167.
Universal CityWalk will bustle with even more activity than usual as mimes, salsa dancers, musicians and other street performers invade the popular shopping, restaurant and entertainment area. A fireworks show will also take place. 6 p.m.-2 a.m. Free. (818) 622-4455.
Disneyland will extend its closing time to 3 a.m. A New Year's countdown will take place in front of the Sleeping Beauty Castle. Fireworks and special musical performers will also add to the festivities. 10 a.m.-3 a.m. $43; ages 60 and older, $41; ages 3-9, $33; ages 2 and younger, free. (714) 781-4565.
Knott's Berry Farm's Praise 2001, an annual contemporary Christian music celebration, presents a lineup of Rebecca St. James, Mark Schultz, All Together Separate, Salvador and Staci Orrico. In between concerts, guests can experience the new Perilous Plunge water ride, the GhostRider roller coaster and the 30-story Supreme Scream thrill ride. 7 p.m.-1 a.m. Advance tickets, $27. Day of the event (if available), $35. (714) 220-5200.
Carlsbad-based Legoland will stage a celebration for kids with music, dancing, fireworks and sparkling cider. 5-7 p.m. Park admission, $34; ages 3-16 and seniors, $29. (760) 918-LEGO.
Bop Till You Drop
Top 40 hits, big band, country, jazz, retro '70s disco and hot Latin dance music will be featured at the Queen Mary. The $75 ticket price includes eight separate live musical and entertainment venues, parking, party favors and fireworks. The celebration takes place 8 p.m.-1 a.m. The Hotel Queen Mary will offer a special New Year's Eve package, which includes overnight accommodations, one bottle of Queen Mary champagne, tickets to the party, a special New Year's Eve dinner buffet and a New Year's Day champagne brunch. The price is $665 for double occupancy. (562) 435-3511.
The Ultra Suede nightclub in West Hollywood will be the site of Girl Bar's New Year's Eve blowout. DJ-generated dance music, a light breakfast and a champagne toast will be offered at this celebration, which is primarily geared to lesbians. 8 p.m.-4 a.m. Advance tickets, $25. At the door, $30. (877) 447-5252.
The primarily gay Factory in West Hollywood will offer prerecorded dance music. 8 p.m.-6 a.m. Advance tickets, $30. At the door, $50. (310) 659-4551.
Heading south, revelers are welcome to dance the night away at Times Square West at the Hyatt Regency in La Jolla. Smooth jazz will be provided by the group Guitar, Sax and more, which features Richard Elliot, Rick Braun, Peter White and Craig Chaquico. Big band swing and DJ generated dance music will also help ignite the event's four dance floors. A 12-foot diameter ball drop and a laser, light and fireworks show will countdown the seconds to the year 2001. 7 p.m. $99. (858) 552-6000.
Swing revivalists the Royal Crown Revue bring their big-band sound to the Century Club in Century City. The first seating at 7:30 p.m. offers a served dinner at $100. The 9:30 p.m. seating features a buffet supper at $125. Show seating only is $50. (310) 553-6000.
Dave and Alvin and the Guilty Men rock the Blue Cafe in Long Beach. A $75 gold ticket includes the Alvin performance, dinner and entrance to the New Year's Eve celebration on the Promenade. Dinner will be served from 6 to 9 p.m. Alvin and his band perform at 10 p.m. Dual show and Promenade celebration tickets are available for $45. (562) 983-7111.