2024 could well be a bumpy year on many fronts, but you can end 2023 with a bang this New Year’s Day weekend with a wide variety of music and dancing.
Where to start? Begin early — begin Saturday, Dec. 30.
Headlining the night is the funk band The Motet playing at McDonald Theatre with support from the brass house trio Too Many Zooz. There’s also the Americana group Bake Club at Viking Brewing Company as well as fiddler Kelly Thibodeaux at beergarden and the Fighting Foo’s and Nevermind, tribute bands for the Foo Fighters and Nirvana who will play at Blairally. Death and doom rock music comes to John Henry’s where Mortiferum performs. Because nothing says New Years like doom!
If you’re in the dancing mood, go to the Eugene Garden Club for the Buenas Vibras Formal Masquerade Dance Party or to The Spot in Springfield for the Springfield Latin Night with DJ Pachanga Mix or, late night, at The Big Dirty with dub maestro Basura. Sam Bond’s has Bleepin’ Funny Live Comedy and — because you can’t have a New Year’s Eve weekend without drag — Drag Takeover hosted by Karess Ann Slaughter.
New Year’s Eve itself is a smorgasbord of offerings for entertainment.
You can start early on the big night itself, like 3:30 pm, at The Pint Pot Pub by celebrating the holiday Irish style with New Years in Dublin and Eugene, followed by The Shamrock Jam. Also early on Sunday is the NYC NYE Party at Iris Vineyards.
If you wish to go more formal on Sunday, there are options here, too, with the annual Eugene Opera Winter Gala at The Shedd Institute and the second annual Eugene Symphony New Year’s Eve Celebration at the Hult Center. The Eugene Symphony concert features Johann Strauss waltzes and favorites from the Great American Songbook with Eugene’s own Halie Loren as well as pianist Alexandre Dossin playing George Gershwin’s “Rhapsody in Blue.” 2024 marks the 100-year anniversary of the premiere of this magnificent piece.
EDM takes center stage late night with The Polish Ambassador at McDonald Theatre. Also on tap for New Year’s Eve is Spunj with Family Mystic at Whirled Pies, Northwest River Band at Shooter’s Pub & Grill, Candy Apple Bleu at The Spot in Springfield, funk group SoulStruck at Mac’s Restaurant and Nightclub and Rock’n Rewind at The Vet’s Ballroom.
New Year’s Eve also has DJs to get the party going, including DJ Tinta Turnter’s NYE Party at Blairally and the DJ Dr. M Dance Party & Light Show at The Axe & Fiddle in Cottage Grove. Other dance parties on tap include the Cap’ n Trips Hippie New Year Dance Party at WOW Hall and the New Queers Eve Party at Spectrum. Additionally, there is theater on Sunday night in the form of Muse Collective at Sam Bond’s and burlesque — Deco de Curio — at John Henry’s.
If you’re not exhausted after any of that, New Year’s Day has the free guided hikes and horseback riding — First Day Hikes — at Elijah Bristow State Park and the New Year’s Day Community Sing with Karly Loveling at the Eugene Garden Club.
As always, stay safe and have fun.