Your guide to enjoying the big night, without going bankrupt.
We all know it—New Year’s Eve is full of high expectations, and even higher cover charges. Since we don’t think you should start 2014 broke and underwhelmed, we’ve curated a list of the more unique (and fairly priced) celebrations in the city.
- The Toronto Zoo: The little ones may not be able to stay up until midnight, but that doesn’t mean they can’t take part in New Year’s Eve celebrations. The Toronto Zoo has organized a special Family Countdown event for children of all ages. Bring them out to meet some new animal friends, enjoy the live entertainment, and count down to 2014 in the early evening. Toronto Zoo (2000 Meadowvale Road), Tuesday at 5 p.m., $20, $12 for kids 3-12 years, FREE for those under 2. Details
- Superstars of Comedy: The Superstars of Comedy want you to laugh off the trials and tribulations of 2013, and enter the new year with a smile on your face. Rob Bebenek hosts this night of stand-up, with funny men Jamie O’Connor, Pat MacDonald, and Ben Miner. Comedy Bar (945 Bloor Street West), Tuesday at 7:30 p.m., $12. Details
- The Dude’s New Year’s: If you’re not into the party scene, may we suggest The Dude’s New Year’s gathering? Spend your last hours of 2013 with other film buffs, watching The Big Lebowski. This is no regular movie screening; your price of admission includes popcorn, drink, and party favours. Plus, showing up in a bathrobe and sunglasses won’t draw any stares. Sounds a lot better than spending the evening on your couch, doesn’t it? Bloor Hot Docs Cinema (506 Bloor Street West), Tuesday at 9 p.m., $20, $17 for Bloor members. Details
- Tranzac New Year’s Eve Party: If you’re an indie fan, then the Tranzac New Year’s Eve Party needs to be on your radar. Making full use of the venue’s three rooms, the evening is chock full of live performances from 10 local bands. Ring in 2014 with Hooded Fang, Kashka, Weaves, Maloo (Maylee Todd’s solo project), The True Visitor Band, Sing Leaf, Blimp Rock, The Woodshed Orchestra, and more! The Tranzac Club (292 Brunswick Avenue), Tuesday at 8 p.m., $15 in advance, $17 at the door. Details
- Lemon Bucket Orkestra: New Year’s Eve is the ultimate party night, so wouldn’t it be appropriate to celebrate with the ultimate party band? Enter Lemon Bucket Orkestra, the 15-piece Balkan-klezmer-gypsy-party-punk super group. Join them as they ring in the new year with their unique, high-energy take on Eastern European music. Attendees are encouraged to bring an old hat to exchange with a stranger at the stroke of midnight. The Opera House (735 Queen Street East), Tuesday at 9 p.m., $20 in advance, $30 at the door. Details
- Bootlegger’s Ball: Let’s face it, drunkenness and debauchery just seem a whole lot classier when you’re gussied up in vintage garb, pretending it’s the Prohibition era. And so we present to you the anachronistic Bootlegger’s Ball. This slick speakeasy features three floors of electroswing DJs, with burlesque performances by Les Coquettes, Dante Inferno, Coco Framboise, and more. Come dressed in ’20s, ’30s, or ’40s styles and you could end up winning the fashion contest. Revival (783 College Street), Tuesday at 9 p.m., $30 in advance. Details
- Bowties and Party Dresses: If you need an excuse to dress up this New Year’s Eve, here it is. Bangs and Blush present their Bowties and Party Dresses shindig. Get out your finery, and prepare to dance into the wee hours to music from the ’50s to present day. Clinton’s (693 Bloor Street West), Tuesday at 9 p.m., $20. Details
- Moksha Yoga: Moksha Yoga Downtown wants to help you usher in a peaceful and positive 2014 with their special New Year’s Eve event. Join them for a hot yoga session set to sitar music, midnight meditation, and tasty tea and snacks by Moira at Feel Good Guru. Moksha Yoga Downtown (577 Wellington Street West), Tuesday at 10 p.m., $50 (20% off for members and students on auto-renew). Details
TRANSIT: Do we even have to tell you that drinking and driving is a bad idea? Leave the cars at home (who wants to fight traffic anyway?) and take advantage of free, extended TTC service between 7 p.m. and 7 a.m. on subways, streetcars, and buses. And if you’re planning a longer commute, take GO Transit. They’re offering late-night service, and free rides after 8 p.m.