Your Guide to Making New Year’s Eve Plans in Baltimore

From bar bashes and dance parties to fireworks and family fun, here are some of the very best local events to kiss 2023 goodbye.

Ever since the massive-world-event-that-shall-not-be-named took over our lives in 2020, many have made a tradition of watching the ball drop from the comfort of the couch on New Year’s Eve. (We love Champagne, charcuterie, and comfy pajamas as much as the next person, so no judgment here!) But if you’re feeling like it’s time to get back to the pre-pandemic days of ringing in the New Year with a night on the town, there are plenty of fun things to do. We’ve even highlighted pricing for the following happenings to help you narrow down the choices, depending on how much of that hard-earned holiday bonus cash you’re willing to spend. 

Whether you’re hoping to watch the fireworks blast over the Inner Harbor (free) or dance until you drop at a local bar (some parties start at $15), here are the New Year’s Eve events that should be on your radar: 

Bar Bashes

Bunny’s Cluck & Shuck NYE Bubble Bash: It’s only fitting that this Fells Point newbie—a concept centered around fried chicken and Champagne—go all out for its first New Year’s. Come as you are (staff will be dressed in 1920s Gatsby garb, and guests are welcome to dress to the theme if they choose) to take advantage of unlimited bubbly and bar snacks, including all-you-can-eat fried chicken and an oyster bar from 9-11 p.m. There will also be a photo booth and plenty of party favors to go around. Price: Single admission is $120. 

Speakeasy Celebration at The Bluebird: Spend the evening at Hampden’s dimly lit cocktail bar to get your fill of unlimited drinks and bites on any of its three levels. Plus, enjoy dancing in the first-floor Green Room and head downstairs to the Whiskey Pub to see what 2024 holds with a visit to the on-site tarot reader. Price: General admission is $100, with an option to upgrade to a reserved table and bottle service for $150. 

Charles Street Block Party: Federal Hill sister-spots Wayward Bar & Kitchen and Banditos Tacos + Tequila are teaming up with their South Charles Street neighbor, The Charles, to offer partygoers the ability to hop back and forth between the three bars with no cover charge. Tickets will get you three-and-a-half hours of all-you-can-drink access at the spots, which will each have their own entertainment and party favors for midnight. (If you’re celebrating in Baltimore County, Banditos in White Marsh is hosting a similar bash.) Price: Ticket packages (with fast-pass options to skip lines) start at $73. 

New Year’s Eve at Claddagh Pub: Two words: no cover. If you’re looking for a pay-as-you-go party in Canton, this O’Donnell Square fixture is a great option. Show up to down drink specials while dancing to live DJ music. Price: Free admission

Duck Duck Goose Presents: New Year’s Eve Soiree: Dress in your shiniest gold getup and head to the roof of the Admiral Fell Inn for prime views of the Inner Harbor fireworks. The cost of admission includes bottomless drinks, passed bites, food stations, live DJ entertainment, a cupcake bar, and bubbly at midnight. Price: $85 per person

New Year’s Eve Dopo Style: Fells Point’s new Italian hangout Prima Dopo is ringing in its first New Year’s Eve with a fun-filled evening of live DJ entertainment, festive decor, and an open bar from 10 p.m.-2 a.m. Price: Tickets are $125.

New Beer’s Eve at Pariah Brewing Company: Beer and burgers? Sign us up. The Hampden taproom is bringing back its annual pregame dance party from 7-11 p.m. with stacked patties from Fuzzies, music by DJ Hell O’Kitty, and $1-off all pours from 9 p.m. until close. The event will end just in time for you to head home (or to your next destination) before the ball drops. Price: Free admission

NYE Live!: If you’re looking for a clubby vibe, Power Plant Live is as reliable an option as ever. (Think: laser shows, live DJs, confetti cannons, and a Times Square-style ball drop on the downtown district’s massive LED screen.) Tickets include no-cover access to all of the area’s nine venues (many of which will feature their own entertainment), with bottomless drinks and buffet stations throughout. Price: General admission starts at $95, with packages for couples and groups available for purchase until Dec. 24. Non-alcoholic admission is $60.  

New Year’s Eve Party on Point: At both locations in Fells Point and Towson, The Point will offer tiered ticket packages for revelers to customize their New Year’s experience. Whether you opt for free admission with a cash bar or go all out with all-inclusive eats and drinks, the parties will feature live DJs spinning right into brunch service the next morning. Price: Packages range from free to $250.

Suspended Brewing’s Countdown to 2024: As the beloved Pigtown brewery plans a move to a smaller building in North Baltimore next year, this New Year’s Eve will be its last on Washington Boulevard. Naturally, the team is planning to go out with a bang. Grab an all-inclusive ticket to sip Suspended brews, special draft cocktails, and bubbly at midnight while enjoying grub by Ekiben and a live DJ. The party is meant to be a celebration of all of the collaborations, events, and memories made with Suspended since the team poured its first pint in Pigtown on New Year’s Eve in 2017. Price: $115

—Courtesy of The Point in Fells via Facebook

Fireworks and Family Fun

Inner Harbor Drone Show & Fireworks: The Baltimore Office of Promotion and the Arts will be adding a new element to the traditional fireworks over the Inner Harbor this year. After sets by DJ Curtis (8 p.m.) and hip-hop quartet Soul Cannon (10 p.m.) at the Inner Harbor Amphitheater, catch the colorful blasts lighting up the skyline along with a brand new drone show choreographed by Curtis Bay laser experts Image Engineering. Price: Free admission

Baby New Year Ball Drop on 34th Street: Historically, thousands of neighbors gather at midnight on the glowing Miracle on 34th Street in Hampden to catch a glimpse of the holiday lights before they come down, while also watching the block’s champion Bob Hosier run through the street dressed as “Baby New Year.” The tradition also features a homemade ball drop. Price: Free admission

The Charmery’s Kiddie Scoop Ball Drop: For eight years now, The Charmery owners David and Laura Alima (parents of two) have put on this early-evening extravaganza for families whose kiddos can’t make it until midnightand this New Year’s Eve will be no different. Arrive at the Union Collective ice cream factory as early as 5:30 p.m. to grab dessert, stick on some glitter tattoos, and dance to live DJ tunes before watching the famed “Kiddie Scoop Ball Drop” at 8 p.m. Price: Free admission. Ice cream and beer available for purchase.

New Year’s Eve Family Party at Cross Street Market: On Dec. 30, bring the kiddos to Cross Street Market in Federal Hill to celebrate a day early. From noon to 4 p.m., enjoy a live band (equipped with inflatable instruments for little ones), plus food from the market’s vendors and arts and crafts with assistance from babysitters with the Napp Network. A festive ball drop is scheduled for 2 p.m. Price: Free admission. Eats and drinks are pay-as-you-go.

Noontime New Year at Port Discovery: Per tradition, Port Discovery’s annual afternoon celebration has lots of fun in store for tykes. This year, the program will offer activities such as DIY confetti cannons, a Wish Tree with the kids’ written and illustrated resolutions, a comedy show, sensory-friendly explorations, and the countdown at noon. Price: Free with museum admission, which is $23.95 (Kids under 1 are free).

Noon Year’s Eve Party at Sweetfrog: Families with children are invited to celebrate in Timonium with frozen yogurt and a countdown at noon. There will also be snacks, pizza, noisemakers, and dancing. Price: Free admission. Frozen yogurt is a la carte.

—Courtesy of Mayor Brandon M. Scott via Facebook

Dazzling Dance Parties

Heels and Ties: A Queer NYE Surprise: Aliceanna Social Club is bringing in 2024 with an energetic dance party celebrating diversity, inclusivity, and acceptance. Grab tickets and start planning your ‘fit (dress-to-impress attire encouraged!) to enjoy three drink tickets, a buffet of apps from 9-11 p.m., a Champagne toast at midnight, and live music spun by DJ Rosie and DJ Missy until 3 a.m. Price: Cash bar and non-alcoholic admission is $30, while VIP admission (including your first three drinks) is $75. 

Version: A Queer Dance Party at The Crown: This last-weekend-of-the-month dance party—which is known for being a celebratory and safe space for Black, queer, and trans folks—is making an epic comeback just in time for the clock to strike midnight on New Year’s Eve. As always, resident DJ Trillnatured and multi-talented musician Kotic Couture will be on hand to heat up the dance floor at The Crown. Price: Tickets are $15 in advance and $20 at the door. 

Sweet Spot New Year’s Eve at Metro Baltimore: If belting familiar pop anthems on the dance floor with a group of friends sounds like your idea of a good time—Sweet Spot’s NYE soiree is the place to be. Hosted by local drag icon Baby, the recurring dance party will offer an opportunity to dance until you drop, as well as a Champagne toast, party favors, and balloons at midnight. Price: Tickets are $15 in advance.

NYE at The Royal Blue: Say sayonara to 2023 beneath the twinkling disco ball at this Station North favorite. From 9 p.m. until close, sip drink specials while dancing the night away to beats spun by Uncle Quincy and Chris Brooks. Price: $10 cover

—Photography by Quintin Parson via Sweet Spot

Midnight Music

Dan Deacon Ensemble New Year’s Eve Gala: Dress to the nines (formalwear is encouraged) and head to the Ottobar in Remington to witness Charm City’s DIY music genius perform alongside Mind on Fire (strings, wind, bass, vocals), Jeremy Hyman on drums, and Devlin Rice on bass guitar. Price: Grab a single ticket for $35, or a pair for $65. 

New Year’s Eve Celebration with Mallow Hill and Miles Bandana at The 8×10: Pile into the hallowed Federal Hill club to end the year with a live show by female-fronted soul, blues, and rock collective Mallow Hill. Also on the bill: the jammy sounds of local indie act Miles Bandana. Price: Tickets are $30.39

Big Blowouts

The Bygone Ball: With 360-degree views of the Inner Harbor, the top-floor restaurant at the Four Seasons Baltimore is arguably one of the finest spots to watch the fireworks. Raid your closet for your swankiest attire to enjoy a premium open bar, full buffet spread (think: seafood, carving stations, and the works), live DJ music, and an epic Champagne toast at midnight. Price: General admission starts at $300.

New Year’s Eve Baltimore Yacht Party: Pull out all of the stops by booking an Inner Harbor cruise on Watermark’s yacht. A DJ, desserts, complimentary Champagne, and a close-up view of the Inner Harbor fireworks are all in store for ticket holders. Price: $130

Charm City Countdown: This annual shebang at the Hilton Baltimore BWI is taking on a royal renaissance theme this year. Start planning your attire (think: “Renaissance Festival-meets-Cinderella’s ball”) and get ready for a whopping 16 party experiences throughout the hotel, including karaoke, a silent disco, and enchanted forest, and a giant French chateau to experience a balloon drop at midnight. Unlimited access to dinner, drinks, and entertainment is also included in the ticket price. Price: Tickets range from $129 to $259.

The Masquerade at The Garden Rooftop: Throw on a mask and enjoy an evening of elegance and mystery at this hotspot in the Bromo Arts District. The masquerade party offers tiered ticket options ranging from passed hors d’oeuvres at the bar to platinum bottle and food service on the namesake rooftop equipped with lush greenery. Price: Tickets packages range from $40-$800.