It’s almost 2022, people! Can you believe it’s been ten years since neon lips, side braids, and the orange Snooki tan were in fashion? We wish it was long ago since those particular trends, but those are good reminders from the 2010 way back machine. Regardless of your position on 2010 trends, these New Year’s Eve parties need to be epic. Keep reading…
Or, they don’t. Maybe your idea of the best way to ring in the new decade is with a few friends, a couple of cocktails, and best wishes for the coming year.
Or, your best New Year’s Eve is with your personal very favorite person, jammies on, and the ball drop on TV. A quarter gets you a half dollar that one of you falls asleep.
The whole point of New Year’s Eve is that the celebration should be one that makes you happy. We’re here to give you some ideas for all three kinds of New Year’s Eve celebrations. So, choose your party, choose your companions, and choose the one who gets the special New Year’s Eve kiss. Or…
Do you prefer celebrating New Year’s Eve virtually?
Does it feel to you like we are coming to the end of a scary ride at a pretty seedy carnival? You know the type. You get on the Ferris Wheel, and the guy who runs it has to keep rocking it to make the wheel turn over. All night you have been holding hands because it feels good to do so. Now you are holding hands because you are afraid you are both going to die! Finally, though, we have arrived together at the end of 2021. How about a party…virtually! Here are our best virtual ideas for celebrating Dec. 31.
Launch Google Calendar to block out the event time. Fill out the details in the pop-up, and make sure you enable Google Meet video conferencing. Add the guest email addresses into the guest section. Email invitations with all the necessary information will automatically be generated and sent. Now, which of the various party platforms are best to facilitate celebrating New Year’s Eve virtually?
Some apps that can work for you
Houseparty app is a potential platform. Houseparty limits each “room” to eight people, so it will only work for small-ish groups. You choose from a whole bunch of games to play together. These include virtual Uno, Trivia, and the word-association game, Chips, and Guac.
Everyone downloads the app, and adds each other as friends, (in-game only. You aren’t all vacationing to Aruba together.) Everyone gets a notification when someone new opens the app. If this platform turns out to be a favorite, it works for general video calls that friends can pop into in the future.
Event platforms (OnZoom, Evite)
If you have a specific activity planned out for your evening, consider using an event-specific platform, such as OnZoom or Evite. These platforms have features like ticketed admission, directories, and payouts for hosts that choose to charge admission. (What a concept, that one!)
OnZoom is an extension of Zoom and has both free and paid events. If you want to attract people you do not personally know, list it here. Evite lets you have as many guests as you like.
List of virtual New Years Eve party ideas
Since New Year’s Eve parties are about games and drinking, we have compiled a list of activities that incorporate both. Pick and choose depending on your tolerance for alcohol…and for games.
Games to play at a “celebrating New Year’s Eve virtually” party
If you like to play games without being limited to the Houseparty offerings, Jackbox is a choice. The company is famous for Quiplash, the Cards Against Humanity-style online game. It just launched The Jackbox Party Pack 7, so you can choose from a set of five games. The host purchases the $29.99 set, which will allow all attendees to access the fun with a code.
Host or attend a mixology class
Look, there are advantages to celebrating New Year’s Eve virtually. Instead of bellying up to a sweaty bar this year, make your own vodka cranberry! Or make an even fancier drink that you can nurse while chatting with your friends. Consider hiring someone to teach mixology to your group. Conversely, you can choose to host or attend a cooking class, late-night yoga, or whatever makes you smile when you think about it.
Solve a murder mystery as a fun way of celebrating New Year’s Eve virtually
Red Herring has a cool online murder mystery game that you and your friends can play together. Everyone practices and delivers their lines dressed up as a character, just as in person. Plus, murders are deliciously stressful. If NYE is about drinking, you can sip some wine. You know, to cope!
Virtual drinking games
If someone is here for a good time, and not a long time, they can play Truth or Shot, Never Have I Ever, or King’s Cup virtually. It will be an honor system whether someone puts a finger down during Never Have I Ever. But your online NYE partiers are a trustworthy lot, or they would never have been invited.
Pajama Party and movies
Is a quieter night more your style? Have your friends around to see your favorite movie using features like Zoom screen share or the Chrome extension, Teleparty. Queue up your favorite rom-com, sip your beverage of choice, and forget 2020.
Try not to get bogged down in the technology piece.
There are a ton of solutions out there. If one platform is not sympatico with your WiFi, or your friends refuse it, switch to a different one. Do a test run to gather some opinions before the details are set into stone. But remember, anything can be changed, even last minute. Celebrating New Year’s Eve virtually means nimbleness and flexibility.
Make a dress code to get into the mood for celebrating New Year’s Eve virtually
One of the best parts of holiday parties is getting dressed up. Just because we are not leaving our houses does not mean we should not show off all the clothes that went to waste during the year of the Covid. Tell your guests to come dressed according to a theme or in their best formal garb. It will provide great talking points in the months to come.
If “virtual” is not your thing, here are some options:
Find the local best and loudest local band for a night that promises to be unforgettable! Perhaps like the picture on top. Dress up in your best finery (befitting the last night of the decade) and turn the dance floor into embers with your flashing feet. Do you need a drink or two, to get up the nerve? Okay, but stop at one or two, because your most awesome moves turn out poorly if you’re loaded when you perform them. Too many “for courage” adult beverages, and you’ll see the new decade in from an emergency room. Now, tear it up! Who is better than you on the parquet floor? Noooo-body!
The “Few Friends” Option
If you are half of a couple, grab some coupled-up friends. If you are happily (or even unhappily) single, grab some single friends. Either way, go into the back of your closet and pull out some vintage games for a game night that will bring back loads of nostalgia. The possibilities are endless. Play UNO for a while, before switching to The Game of Life. A few people may want to try their hand at Monopoly with a one-hour time limit. Couples can play as teams, against one another, or at separate game stations entirely. Be careful of that one person with his/her own cribbage board, and for sure, don’t play him for money.
The Couple of Lovebirds Option
Sometimes, couples who have been together for a long time forget things. Sadly, some of the things they forget are the things that made them a couple in the first place. Plan a New Year’s Eve Memory Trail. If your first date was at Bob’s Footlongs, start there. Have a bacon cheeseburger, fries, and a shake just like you did when he didn’t think you could eat that much. (He has since learned). Was your first kiss in Bob’s parking lot or on a nearby park bench? Re-create that kiss. This is no time for a nuanced kiss, so put your back into it! Finish with a walk by a spot that is a favorite one. Nights like this will remind the two of you why you make a great team.
Footie Pajamas and New Year’s Rockin’ Eve
You two don’t need help with your New Year’s Eve. Have more than plenty of mini marshmallows for the hot chocolate, and remember Dick Clark on what was his favorite night of the year.
At the end of the day (or night), it is your New Year’s Eve party. We all just want to celebrate the fact that 2021 is finally coming to an end. Celebrating New Year’s Eve virtually is just the answer.
Happy New Year, everyone!