Happy New Years to Historic City News readers

St. Augustine Visitors and Convention Bureau Communications Director Jay Humphreys alerts Historic City News readers that there are many choices for revelers planning to ring in New Year’s Day this weekend.

Friday: December 31
Start New Year’s Eve at 11 a.m. at the Cultural Center at Ponte Vedra Beach where kids can enjoy pizza, decorate cookies, put together a hilarious party hat AND snap, crackle and pop in the Bubble Wrap Room while jumping to jingles from the house band. The big balloon drop takes place at the stroke of noon! Tickets are $5 per person or $15 for a family of four. The Cultural Center is located at 50 Executive Way.

Kick off 2011 in seaside style at the Beach Blastoff in the City of St. Augustine Beach! Enjoy a blast of flavor, icy sculptures, and fireworks when several of St. Augustine’s favorite restaurants serve up chili for tasting and judging at the Fire and Ice Chili Cook-off from 4 to 8 p.m. After things cool off from the chili – the big fireworks show begins at 8:30 p.m.! Bursting above the Atlantic, the spectacular fireworks display is the perfect way to greet the New Year! Admission is free. Chili tasting tickets are $1 each and beer, wine, champagne, soda, water, t-shirts and novelties will be available. Net proceeds will be applied to improve recreational facilities in St. Augustine Beach. The Beach Blast takes place at the St. Johns County Fishing Pier and Pavilion, 350 A1A Beach Boulevard in St. Augustine Beach.

It’s hard to beat a New Year’s celebration that features dinner and a spectacular view of Matanzas Bay and the fireworks! Beginning at 7 p.m., The White Room, located on the rooftop of 1 King Street in St. Augustine, will be serving a special New Year’s Eve dinner that includes cocktails, entrée and a roof-top view. After dinner, walk over to O.C. White’s in the historic General Worth Mansion for a cocktail, dancing and a champagne toast at midnight. For reservations and more information, call 904.824.9056 or email info@ocwhiteroom.com.

Celebrate the New Year with a visit to a swingin’ stage door canteen in the ’40s! This special presentation of G.I. Holiday Jukebox at St. Augustine’s Limelight Theatre includes a pre-show social hour with catered hors d’oeuvres, an open dance floor and an intermission champagne toast with the stars of the show! The USO show includes music, comedy and tributes to the heroic men and women of the armed forces. Doors open at 7 p.m. for hors d’oeuvres and dancing, the show starts at 8 p.m. and finishes at 9:30 p.m. Tickets are only $50 per person, but seating is limited. Additional performances on Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m. – tickets for these performances are $25 adults, $22 Seniors and $20 for students and military.For reservations, call 904.825.1164 or go to www.limelight-theatre.org

Head over to the World Golf Village to ring in the New Year. The Renaissance Resort will be hosting a funtastic party featuring entertainment by the Funk Monster Band, dancing, a dinner buffet, desserts, a champagne toast at midnight and a late night snack station. Tickets are $65 per person. Accommodation packages are also available. The Renaissance Resort is located at World Golf Village, just off I-95 at exit 323 in St. Augustine. For reservations and more information, call 904-940-8000, or visit www.WorldGolfRenaissance.com.

Ring in the New Year aboard the Pirate Ship Black Raven. On this piratical adventure there will be music and a cash bar but, keep an eye on the horizon as the Black Raven sails for the enemy’s camp. There may be sword fights and canon fire! Tickets are $50 per person (adults only) and include food, champagne toast, and pirate show. The Black Raven departs at 10:30 p.m. from the St. Augustine Municipal Marina, located at 111 Avenida Menendez. Reservations are required. For more information, call 877.578.5050 or visit www.PirateShipBlackRaven.com.

There are delicious New Year’s Eve dining specials at numerous outstanding restaurants on Florida’s Historic Coast. For example, enjoy an authentic six-course French dinner prepared especially for New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day by Chef Jean-Stephane Poinard at his award-winning Bistro de Leon in St. Augustine. To end 2010 or begin 2011 with a real Italian dinner, head to Amici’s in St. Augustine Beach for their special New Year’s menu or check out Cafe Atlantico’s five-course New Year’s Eve dinner. One of St. Augustine’s all-time favorite restaurants, The Raintree, also has special three and four-course dinners especially selected for New Year’s Eve. For outstanding dining with European style, don’t miss the holiday menu at Le Pavillon. And for exquisite dining in one of the most beautiful oceanfront settings in all of Northeast Florida, select from the New Year’s Eve menu at The Reef.

Friday, Saturday & Sunday: December 29-January 2
Explore St. Augustine’s famous Nights of Lights in cozy comfort. Guests will delight at the festive wonderland of the historic area glittering with over 2 million lights. Caroling, hot cider, homemade cookies and complimentary magical viewing glasses, handcrafted by Santa’s elves add to the magic of your evening. Tours depart between 6 and 8 p.m. from St. Augustine Visitors Information Center Trolley Pick-up area. Tickets are $7 for adults and $4 for children 6 to 12. For more information. Visit www.TrolleyTours.com or call 904.829.3800.

Friday and Sunday: December 31 & January 2
Experience an exciting musical salute to The Platters, The Coasters, The Drifters and the Temptations at Fort Menendez in St. Augustine. Performed by Myles Savage, former lead singer for The Platters, and Ira Greig of The Drifters, this salute features the all-time classic songs of these immortal groups. Performances are Friday at 7 p.m. and 11 p.m. and Sunday at 3 p.m. Tickets are $40. Reservations are recommended. BUY ONE GET ONE FREE LIMITED TIME TICKET OFFER. To purchase tickets, CALL Fort Menendez at Old Florida Museum at 904-824-8874. Regular priced tickets are sold at the door as availability permits.

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