How about a retro New Year's? On Wednesday, Dec. 31 at 8 p.m., return to the days of bobby socks, pompadours and friendly relations with Cuba. At the River Lodge Conference Center, The Delta Nationals play classic American dance tunes to keep you going like Run-around Sue until the complimentary Champagne toast when the clock strikes midnight ($50). Tray after tray of hors d'oeuvres from Dorris & Daughter should fortify you for a round of ping pong or pool (the '50s were a simpler time, and this is what people did before Call of Duty). The evening's festivities, put on by the Fortuna Sunrise Rotary Club, benefit the Rotary Polio Plus Program and the Loleta Boys & Girls Club.
Not far enough back? How about the days of economic depression, the end of Prohibition and — no, not now, the 1930s. RampArt Skatepark brings you the vintage-inspired Cirque du New Year's Eve starting at 9 p.m. ($15). Got an outfit that says "big top?" Wear it for the costume contest and blend right in with the stilt walkers, fire breathers, hula hoopers, palm readers and sideshow folk. Hoot and holler along with the bluegrass of Coyotes & Jackalopes, which calls to mind a more fun version of the Dust Bowl. The burlesque divas Va Va Voom Vixens will be tossing their tassels with special guest Lefty Lucy, Miss Coney Island 2011 (insert wolf whistle). Just make sure you have a sober ride home — or did the novels of the Jazz Age teach us nothing?
Happy New Year!
— Jennifer Fumiko Cahill