New Year’s Eve

If you are looking for a New Year’s celebration that doesn’t involve alcohol and/or bumping and grinding, here are just a few suggestions. (If you are looking for grindage, see this week’s cover story.)

• Zoo Year’s Eve with Radio Disney will mark the fourth annual New Year’s Eve event at the Indianapolis Zoo. It will take place Dec. 31 from 5-9 p.m. The family-oriented event offers a safe and fun place to ring in the new year. On-going activities and entertainment begin at 5 p.m. and end with a laser light show countdown at the entry plaza to bring in the new year at 9 p.m. Radio Disney will provide free party favors and prizes (while supplies last). You can ride the train and carousel for free, dance to the festive Radio Disney music, bounce around the evening in a bounce house and gaze up at the amazing stilt walkers, jugglers and more. Tickets can only be purchased at the zoo front gate: $10; $8 for children. Parking is $5. The zoo is located at 1200 W. Washington St.

• Eagle Creek Park will offer a New Year’s Eve Midnight Hike through the winter forest. The event will include a countdown to the new year and celebration with roasted marshmallows and hot chocolate. Dress warmly and bring a flashlight. Dec. 31, 11:15 p.m.-12:45 a.m. Eagle Creek Park is located at 7840 W. 56th St. The 56th Street gate will be unlocked from 10:45-11:20 p.m. for registered participants only. Cost is $5. To register, call 317-327-PARK.

• The Indiana State Museum will present Family New Year’s Eve Celebration Dec. 31, 6:30-9 p.m. (museum exhibits remain open until 11 p.m.). There will be magicians, clowns, crafts and entertainment. The new year is celebrated at 8 p.m., with a countdown and balloon drop in the museum’s O’Bannon Great Hall. Admission is $10, which includes access to regular museum galleries (The Lord of the Rings Motion Picture Trilogy — The Exhibition is extra). For reservations, call 317-232-1637. The museum is located at 650 W. Washington St.

• The annual Burning Bowl Service will again take place at Unity Church of Indianapolis, 907 N. Delaware. It is a unique alternative to letting go of the old and ringing in the new year. Participants write down that which they wish to release from their lives and toss it into the fire of the burning bowl. This ritual allows participants to set the stage for mental, physical and spiritual growth as they enter the new year. The event takes place Dec. 31 at 7 p.m. and is free. Info at www.unityofindy.com.

• The Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra will bring in the new year with the saxophone ensemble The Capitol Quartet for its New Year’s Eve Concerts. There will be two programs featuring familiar light classics plus the music of Leonard Bernstein, Leroy Anderson and many hits from the swing era. Concerts are Dec. 31 at 7 and 10 p.m. at the Hilbert Circle Theatre on Monument Circle. Following the 10 p.m. performance, concertgoers from both performances are invited to attend a post-concert party from midnight to 2 a.m. in the lobby that will include light hors d’oeuvres, a cash bar and dancing to the music of the Paul Berns Orchestra. Tickets are $30-$55 (7 p.m.) and $35-$60 (10 p.m.). Champagne Box Seats: $140/couple (7 p.m.); $160/couple (10 p.m.). For reservations, call 317-639-4300, www.IndianapolisSymphony.org.

• ComedySportz Indianapolis will present an additional show Dec. 31, “A New Year’s Eve Countdown Blowout.” The show will be a specially-themed ComedySportz match featuring two teams of favorite ComedySportz performers. The teams will compete for points by playing improvisational games based on audience suggestions. Audience volunteers will be used throughout the evening. The final game will be an all-out battle of wits timed to end precisely at midnight. Officiating the event will be one of ComedySportz’s specially trained referees, who will make sure the comedy spectacle stays fresh, funny and all-ages appropriate. The show will start at 10:30 p.m. Tickets, which include special treats, surprises and noise-makers, will be $20 for adults, $15 for seniors and students and $10 for children 5-11. Kids 4 and under get in free. The regular show at 7:30 will go on as scheduled at normal prices. ComedySportz Theatre is located at 721 Massachusetts Ave. For reservations, call 317-951-8499.

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