Sinners and saints

Dec 27, 2006 at 12:00 am

It’s that time of year again, when the compulsion to placate our inner moralist rears its judgmental head. It’s New Year’s Eve, and those mental finger-wags are beginning to sully our collective drunken slumbers. But it’s not all bad — we know many of you are planning on making resolutions this year, and we hope we can offer some assistance. For those of you who intend to commit to serious lifestyle changes on Jan. 1, we’ve got all kinds of listings that should sate your last hurrah. We found exploits for overspenders, lazyasses, drunks, cokeheads, smokers, letches and sluts. And for those of you who’d prefer to ring in aught-seven with your kids or with your ass already situated on the wagon, we’ve got healthy alternatives. Truth be told, we spent weeks sifting through reams of disco-ball imagery and fake-tanned strippers sipping from martini glasses to find you a thoughtful compendium of stuff to do. Here’s to a great 2007 and, hey — call a cab if you drink too much.—Eve Doster


The Inn at 97 Winder
While the city exhausts itself with cheap Champagne toasts and sloppy midnight kisses, you could be snuggling with a loved one in the old-world European elegance of one of Detroit’s most notable B&Bs. The Inn at 97 Winder is one of the last remaining 1870s Victorian mansions in the city and — because it was restored from near-ruin by folks who believe in D-town’s rebirth — is arguably one of the most romantic places in town. Plus, there’s hardly a better way to ring in 2007 than from the cozy comfort of someone else’s mansion. Consummation is, of course, optional, but heartily encouraged. Rooms run $235-$325 per night. At 97 Winder, Detroit; 313-832-4348

New Year’s Eve Party at Historic Pine Knob Mansion
Historically, the Pine Knob Mansion has been a fine place to hobnob. The swanky evening they have planned for New Year’s will include hors d’oeuvres, cocktails, a midnight Champagne toast, a comedian, a light show and — get this — Top 40 pop! So tie that ascot, get pie-eyed and, um, bring sexy back? From 8 p.m. to 1 a.m. at the Pine Knob Mansion, 5580 Waldon Rd., Clarkston; 248-625-0700. $99 per person. Reservations highly recommended

Detroit Legends of Electronic Music
Put a check next to this one as a one-of-a-kind potentially magical New Year’s Eve event. Derrick May, Kevin Saunderson and Carl Craig — three Detroit techno originals plugged into the international party circuit since the 1980s — are home and ready to dance it up for the holidays. May and Saunderson have just returned from DJ dates in European cities. Craig has been even busier: recording, remixing, performing live all around the world — and getting rave reviews for all three. He’s as hot as any electronic musician on the planet. Vet Detroit house performers Theo Parrish and Al Ester join the three legends at the Max M. Fisher Music Center, 3711 Woodward Ave., Detroit. The party begins at 10 p.m. and goes until 4 a.m. General admission is $75, and $150 for VIP, which includes valet parking, light hors d’oeuvres, private bars and bottle service. At Max M. Fisher Music Center, 3711 Woodward Ave., Detroit; 313-576-5100.

In Jacob M. Appel’s self-described “sappy satire,” Arborphilia (Tree Love), Judge Gwendolyn Gage (Patsy Hudson) has issues with her daughters’ romantic choices. Her oldest daughter, Lilly (Leah Smith), wants to marry a Republican, and the younger one, Laurel (Imani Turner) is a tree-hugger. Literally. Laurel is infatuated with the massive poplar that shades the alley behind their big-city brownstone. The play uses this bizarre conceit as a vehicle for satire, poking fun at right-wing politics. If that weren’t enough frolic, it’s part of the Detroit Repertory Theatre’s annual New Year’s Eve Celebration, with a late-night performance, free Champagne, and a menu that includes such enticing choices as potato leek and fennel soup, barbecued chicken wings and braised beef tenders. And it holds the promise of lots that’s good for your health: Old trees, live theater, good food and plenty of guffaws. At 13103 Woodrow Wilson, Detroit; 313-868-1347. Tickets are $75; must be purchased in advance; early reservations recommended.

New Year’s at the Townsend Hotel
The Rugby Grille, inside of Birmingham’s posh Townsend Hotel, will polish off 2006 with a little sophistication. Guests can dine on selections from five courses of delicacies including Maine lobster salad, Norwegian salmon, chocolate lava cake and an entrée of either braised Wagyu beef short or Millbrook rack of lamb. A Champagne toast, top hats, tiaras, noisemakers and confetti included. At 100 Townsend St., Birmingham; 248-642-7900. Reservations required. $95 per person for the 6 p.m. sitting and $150 per person for the 9 p.m. sitting. Piano music will be featured at the 6 p.m. sitting and musical group Intrigue will perform in the Tea Lobby in the evening.

New Year’s Eve at Seldom Blues
This black-tie affair opens with a decadent five-course dinner planned by Seldom Blues Executive Chef Jacob Abraham, crescendos with the midnight Champagne toast and smooth jazz from flutist Alexander Zonjic and saxman Kirk Whalum, and resolves with a 1:30 a.m. breakfast — and all with a stunning view of the Detroit River and the Windsor skyline as a backdrop. Guests of this celebration are also offered a special room rate at the Detroit Marriott at the Renaissance Center. At 400 Renaissance Center, Detroit. Call 313-567-7301 Ext. 2 for reservations. Tickets are $450 per couple.

Rock the Boat II
Venerable vessel the Detroit Princess brings back its New Year’s Eve Detroit River excursion, Rock the Boat. This riverboat ride goes from 10 p.m. to 1 a.m. and will include three decks filled with live entertainment, free buffet and a midnight Champagne toast. And who knows, if you are a swingin’ single, maybe you’ll make the sort of love connection that’d make Captain Steuben pop a few shirt buttons. The Detroit Princess is docked behind the RenCen, 330 E. Jefferson Ave., Detroit. Call 586-977-9475 or 313-532-9629. $269 with hotel package for $75 for regular ticket.

The Resolution Ball ’07
Party planners are bracing themselves for more than 1,000 attendees, and since they’ve made this event open to both singles and couples, “oh-seven” should arrive the inclusive way. There are three different packages: The VIP dinner package is $175, the hors d’oeuvres package is $125 and the reception-only package is $100. Entertainment will be provided by That ’80s Band and prospective sots should enjoy the Absolut martini bars and premium liquor options. There’s also a traditional Champagne toast at midnight with favors, a live feed of the ball drop from Times Square in New York, a balloon drop and several late-night snack stations. At Royal Park Hotel, 600 E. University Dr., Rochester. Call 248-543-1000 for more information. Black tie optional.

New Year’s Eve at the Whitney
It’s a trusty standby for upscale dining in the D and their New Year’s Eve offerings are more of the same. For $85 (plus tax, alcohol and 20 percent gratuity) guests of the beautiful Whitney restaurant can choose from either a 5 p.m. or 9 p.m. seating, both of which will include an 8-course meal, live jazz and party favors. At 4421 Woodward Ave., Detroit; 313-832-5700.


2K7 New Year
Who needs to catch the red-eye to Las Vegas when you can piddle away your Christmas bonus right here at home? See, the Motor City Casino has a whole shindig planned. There’ll be live entertainment from Dreamcatcher, Nine, Red Hot & Dance, Teen Angels and Dr. Pocket. Also expect great food, free fortune tellers (maybe they’ll tell you when to double down?), free commemorative photos, poker tournaments and strolling celebrity “big heads.” Actually, this kind of sounds like a romp down Hollywood Boulevard, doesn’t it? Nonetheless, it’s at the Motor City Casino, 2901 Grand River Ave., Detroit; 877-777-0711.

Jeffersonian New Year’s Eve
Powder that wig and eat like a king! Wait, no, don’t. Thomas Jefferson had a problem with that whole monarchy racket. But what the semi-controversial patriot did tend to embrace was most Americans’ divine right to live and eat well. Celebrate New Year’s Eve the Jeffersonian way with a specialty dinner inspired by records from Jefferson’s personal chefs and writings from and about the third American president. The old-fashioned menu includes delights such as South Carolina olives, Virginia oyster bisque, roasted capon with artichoke stuffing and red currant glaze, wine jelly and apple charlotte. What? No, Monti-Jell-O? At Zinger-man’s Roadhouse, 2501 Jackson Ave., Ann Arbor; 734-663-3663. $60 per plate; add $40 if you’d like wine with dinner.

Buzz Bar New Year’s Eve
Anyone who ever hung out at the Music Menu in Greektown knows that joint was one of the best places in town to spread your hedonistic wings. The music was bluesy, the booze flowed like the Au Sable and the misbehavin’ took place nightly. Now that the Menu’s former owner has opened up the Buzz Bar, it’s just like old times. Consider New Year’s the perfect night to reminisce. Furthermore, any bar that serves beer batter-fried pickles knows the art of indulgence. At 546 E. Larned, Detroit; 313-962-1800.

New Year’s Eve Masquerade Ball
You know if they are dropping hundred dollar bills from the rafters, it’s gonna be a good time. This decade-old masquerade ball sells out every year — maybe it’s because they offer a whopping four floors of music with four different DJs including local rumpshake master, DJ Shortstop. There’s also streaming music videos and two huge balloon drops (one of which includes the 20 aforementioned Benjamins), thousands of prizes and party favors to keep the noise pollution at eardrum-crushing levels. And the best part? It’ll only cost you $15 to get past the velvet rope. At Clutch Cargo’s, 65 E. Huron St., Pontiac; 248-333-2362.

If ever there was a band that embodied barbecue Fritos crumbs-on-a-dingy recliner type of hedonism, it’s the fleshy Big Time wrestlin’, cross-dressin’, hardcore punk rock band, Bump-n-Uglies. Not only does the band name conjure squirm-inducing images of clumsy midnight coitus, their stage show is every bit as much an “I dare you” as it is a rock ’n’ roll fiesta! Classic filthy blue-collar fun. With Chapstik at Small’s, 10339 Conant, Hamtramck; 313-873-1117.

Celebrity Look-Alike Contest at Boogie Fever
Here’s a chance for pop culture fanatics, fans of the E! Channel and Entertainment Tonight devotees to rear their fauxhawked, blond highlighted widdle heads. Boogie Fever in Ferndale will host a New Year’s Eve party fitting for anyone who digs the dance club scene. And as if the platform, Saturday Night Fever-esque dance floor, heavy rotation of guilty-pleasure dance tunes (see ’80s, Top 40, C+C Music Factory), flowing cocktails and pizza buffet weren’t enough to pique interest, the impossibly popular Ferndale nightclub will host a Celebrity Look-Alike Contest. Winner will receive a free trip to Las Vegas. Let’s just hope the Britney doppelgängers opt for a Brazilian. Ewww. At 22901 Woodward Ave., Ferndale; 248-541-1600. $25 per person.

New Year’s Eve on the Star Clipper
All aboard, next stop 2007. The Michigan Star Clipper Dinner Train hosts the wildly popular New Year’s Eve Dinner Gala every year and it’s high-class all the way, baby. Guests will be served an elegant five-course meal and can choose from five different packages: New Year’s Madness, Murder on the Star Clipper, David Stan Vegas Show, Sounds of Saxman and Deluxe Overnight Special (additional costs included). Dress code is upscale and all trains depart from the historic 1887 depot in Walled Lake at 840 N. Pontiac Trail, Walled Lake; 248-960-9440. Make reservations now, as this event always sells out. $135 per person.

Slows BBQ New Year’s Eve Party
There really is no place in town that’s better for comfort food, ambience and killer beer selections. Slows BBQ will host one of the coziest, most down-home New Year’s Eve parties in the city. For a 10-spot, starting at 10 p.m., guests can enjoy a delectable buffet from chef Brian Perrone, a Champagne toast, a rotating convoy of 10 DJs and — oh hell, the mac ‘n’ cheese is worth the price of admission. Eat it. At 2138 Michigan Ave., Detroit; 313-962-9828. $10 per person.

Hal Sparks
Hal Sparks was named after the 2001 supercomputer. That fun fact appears on the Wikipedia site devoted to the comedian-actor, so who knows if it’s true. But bearing the name of a pop culture icon seems appropriate for Sparks who, besides co-starring in Showtime’s Queer as Folk, is well-known for being VH-1’s ultimate talking head. Dude can drop snark on the head of anything, from TV on I Love the 70s/80s/90s to kitschy toys and kitschier character actors; if you ever discover an I Love the 1790s during some hungover TV grazing session, Sparks’ll likely be there, busting bits about Karl Ditters von Dittersdorf’s breeches against a green screen background. At the Max M. Fisher Music Center, 3711 Woodward Ave., Detroit; 313-576-5100.

Bette Midler Impersonator
One of Bette Midler’s finest quips went something like “My husband told me if I’d just learn to clean the house better we could fire the maid. I told him ‘If you’d just learn how to fuck, we could fire the mechanic.’” Ba-doom-boom. Hell, nobody does palatable raunch quite like Bette Midler. Well, no one that is, except for Kathy Thompson, the hilarious Bette Midler impersonator who’s slated to take the stage this New Year’s at Genetti’s Hole-in-the-Wall in Northville. Expect a little bit of everything — the scatological one-liners, double entendres a go-go, Ethel Merman-style yuk-yuks, sappy love songs and a relentless feminist ’tude. 8 p.m. at Gennetti’s Hole-in-the-Wall, 108 E. Main, Northville; 248-349-0522. $50 per person.

New Year’s Eve at Wise Guys
This year was too damn serious. Why not start 2007 off with something that takes your mind off the war in Iraq, cosmic rip-offs like Ken Lay’s early demise and Kid Rock’s totally unexpected marriage woes? Wise Guys Comedy Club in Wyandotte has an entire evening of wisecracking courtesy of local comedians Bill Bushart, Laura Lou and MC Bob “the Suit” Phillips. There’s an early-bird show at 6 p.m. and a dinner buffet of prime rib, catch of the day, veggies and roasted potatoes from 9 to 10 p.m. The comedy show runs from 10:15 to 11:45 p.m. and guests can enjoy Champagne toasts at midnight. There will also be a DJ from midnight until 2 a.m., when guests can chow down on some free pizza. At Wise Guys Comedy Club (inside of Portofino), 3455 Biddle St., Wyandotte; 734-752-1015. $75 per person.

New Year’s Eve at the Dirty Martini and Second City
Eat a little. Laugh a little. Dance, dance, dance. Laugh a lot. Eat a little more. You’ll be busy like a little hen at Second City’s New Year’s Eve Party. Select from four different New Year’s Eve schedules. Package 1 includes a 5 p.m. dinner at Andiamo and a 7 p.m. show at Second City ($89.95); Package 2 includes a 7 p.m. dinner, a 9 p.m. Second City show and entrance to the Dirty Martini Lounge to ring in the new year ($149.95); Package 3 include a 7 p.m. dinner and entrance to the Dirty Martini ($99.95); and Package 4 includes entrance to the Dirty Martini ($49.45). At 42705 Grand River Ave., Novi; 248-348-4448.


Erotic New Year’s Eve
What’s an Erotic New Year’s Eve? You could be doing anything that qualifies as “erotic,” right? You could be making sweet L-U-V with the lights and Isaac Hayes down low. You could be shackled in some basement enduring cuckold and strap-on training. You could be alone with a stack of porn. “Erotic” could be pizza and beer. Maybe you’re finally onto that “dick in a box.” Or, you could be surrounded by naked chicks whose apple-shaped cans entertain not just you, but your lover too. That’s right, on New Year’s Eve, Cheetah’s in lovely Windsor is offering a heady to-do that involves “erotic entertainment” for couples. There are bonuses: A 12-girl shower show kicks at midnight and there’ll be Champagne, erotic appetizers (huh?) and party favors. Now you and your significant other can walk out of a gentlemen’s club, down a couple hundred and smelling like vanilla. And because it’s Canada, the girls are completely nude. At Cheetah’s, 86 Chatham St., Windsor; 519-252-1105.

James Bond “007”-themed Party
The Vesper. Three ounces of dry gin, an ounce of vodka and half an ounce of Lillet. Shaken, not stirred — and don’t forget the lemon peel. You’ll have to remember all of that during this James Bond-themed party, which features Ann Arbor band Michael May and the Messarounds. At midnight, expect the requisite Champagne toast and at 1 a.m. there’s a Red Bull “refueling station,” and oxygen bar. So don your international-spy finest, have “Q” throw on his Sunday best, and head on down to Live at PJ’s, 102 S. First St., Ann Arbor; 734-623-1443. $20 per person.

Salsa Dance Party at the Monkey Bar
Salsa music is deeply mystical, and, ultimately completely rewarding. Salsa dance is, arguably, one of the most erotic things going. As hypocritical Puritanism and free Internet porn take over our everyday lives, precious little is left to the imagination anymore. Seems the insinuation of down-and-dirty sex is more emotionally rewarding than the real thing. Get busy with your pants on with DJ Cisco and DJ Carlos Seda and live performances from Orquesta Sensacional and Cash V. Casino at the Monkey Bar, 141 W. Nine Mile Rd., Ferndale; 248-582-7227. $25 in advance ( or $35 at the door.

New Year’s Eve at Ice
Let’s face it, few folks can eke mirth out of a night on the town better than the LBGT community. For the glorious drag queens anyway, why would they put all that hard primp and prep time to waste? And though there’s few better ways to (really) let go other than a good old-fashioned gay nightclub excursion, Ice in Hamtramck is a great place for people in the gay community to meet and fraternize. Thanks to Murray and Peter — the former owners of Space Nightclub in Detroit — Ice is Michigan’s newest and most popular gay hotspot. At 11425 Joseph Campau, Hamtramck; 313-365-1446. 18 and older.

Spencer Barefield Quartet
Can you think of anything more chic than ringing in ’07 with Coltrane, Monk, Mingus and Silver? You can hear those jazz standard bearers in the repertoire of the Spencer Barefield Quartet, featuring pianist Kenn Cox, Toronto bassist Dave Young and drummer Djallo Djakate Keita. Guitarist Barefield will weave in his distinctive originals as well. At a homey location (actually some jazz lovers’ home), call 313-891-2514 for reservations and location information

89X New Year’s Eve Show with Unwritten Law, the Muggs, the Gore Gore Girls and Bedford Drive
Only the gents in the Muggs could dream up, and then zealously execute, a power trio that upholds the honor of both Flint’s Grand Funk Railroad and Ann Arbor’s Brownsville Station. The operative word being “power,” of course. The longtime MT-approved Muggs dudes (keysman Tony DeNardo, guitar-hero/singer Danny Methric and drummer Matt Rost) make a din befitting a twin-guitar quintet, with a songwriting acumen that matches “Mean Mistreater” and “Smokin’ in the Boys Room.” Talk about reasons to get hammered! And get hammered you will, ’cause this is more than just another boring Detroit rock gig performed by down-dressed fans of music who look like they should be anywhere else but on stage. No, a Muggs show ain’t a “rock” gig, it’s a fucking four-on-the-floor rock ’n’ roll show put on by those who mean it, man. So what’cha gonna about it? Dearborn Hyatt Regency, 600 Town Center Dr., Dearborn; 313-593-1234.

The Go at the Painted Lady
Kim Fowley thinks their shit don’t stink — and no matter what side of Kim Fowely’s fence you stand on, that says something, no? Just ask Joan Jett or, better, New Riders of the Purple Sage. Anyway, Go glitter-fuzz lynchpins Bobby Harlow and John Krautner have been holed up recording with buds Dion Fischer and Dave Buick for what feels like an eternity. Well, we know there ain’t no rock ’n’ roll saviors anymore, but there’s nothing wrong with a little self-deception. Harlow and Krautner — along with James McConnell, Marc Fellis — are the Go now, and happen to be the closest thing you’ll get to a genuine skinny-legged, unkempt, song-driven, eye-for-glamour rock ’n’ roll outfit in the Motor City. And that says a lot. It says a lot too that the Go is doing a rare New Year’s Eve gig at the old Lily’s in Hamtramck. The suitably damaged and soon-to-be-giant Miss Alex White and the Red Orchestra (including a couple onetime Clone Defects) fill the bill along with Josh Daniels and the Addictions. What’s more, the Painted Lady will stay open until 4 a.m.! How Big City rock ’n’ roll is that? At the Painted Lady, 2930 Jacob St., Hamtramck; 313-874-2991.

Disco Dive
We’re used to seeing her with an electric guitar draped around her alabaster neck, but fiery-haired and stylish Von Bondies guitarist Marcie Bolan will be hosting and slingin’ the hooch this New Year’s Eve. She’s calling the night Disco Dive, and with such DJs as white-boy rapper EsQuire and ex-Sights drummer Mike Trombley spinning soul, funk, disco and Italo at Michigan Avenue’s favorite dive bar, LJ’s, we’d say they’ve got things pretty much figgered out. We make no promises, but if that White Russian needs a refill, try flicking your Bic. $3 admission at 2411 Michigan Ave., Detroit; 313-962-0013

Dorkwave New Year’s Eve
The men of Dorkwave have pulled a coup of sorts. These dance party planners and DJs extraordinaire have stolen the cocksure thunder of many a local rock star only to become the object of much doe-eyed desire themselves. Who knew that a bunch of arty music wonks would attract so many horny dance party enthusiasts? Certainly not us. Well done, fellas. For $15 you can partake of an old school ’50s-style Italian buffet (early), followed by copius amounts of boogying. At Northern Lights Lounge, 660 E. Baltimore St., Detroit; 313-873-1739.

So you want to party away 2006 and dance in the New Year with electronic music but can’t decide what kind? Not to worry. A diverse upstairs-downstairs program at Corktown’s Fi-Nite Gallery could be just the ticket. The lineup of DJs includes Paxahau’s John Johr and Rich Korach, Eric Cloutier (Element8/Nefarious) — all will be spinning tasty minimal upstairs — and funky househeads Bassick, Big Joe Hix, Sutter, Tyler Durden, Number 9 and Loklsol playing downstairs. Also on the bill upstairs are Drew Pompa, Unherd, Will Evo and Jeremy Poling. Expect electro, minimal techno and everything in between from this crew. The party starts at 10 and promoters promise it will go late. Very late. 1370 Plum St., Detroit; 313-662-5787. $10 per person.


Belle Isle New Year’s Eve Family Fun Run/Walk
Even in the cold weeks of early winter, Belle Isle attracts people by the thousands. This 37-year-old tradition has hosted as many as 2,000 participants and is a health-conscious way to ring out 2006. The run includes post-race refreshments, an awards presentation and a trophy to every child under the age of 12 who finishes the mile-long trek. Registration is noon to 3 p.m. at the Belle Isle Casino. At 3 p.m. there’s the open/children’s one-mile run; at 3:05 p.m. the four-mile racewalk/fitness walk commences; and at 3:30 p.m., the joggers begin a four-mile run. For online entry go to

The Bang!
OK, so it’s a dance party at a bar. But if you saw the kind of sweating that goes on at this much-loved Ann Arbor dance extravaganza, you’d know that it’s one hell of a cardio session. The Bang doesn’t discriminate, either: Too young to drink, but not prepared to spend the night at home? The Bang is open to everyone 18 and older, and if we do say so ourselves, this boogie fest was born out of real deal dance music beginnings — soul, R&B, funk, mod pop and rock ’n’ roll — not that wedding DJ nonsense. To wit: if you do the Hustle or the ghastly White Man’s Overbite, it will be of your own volition and lack of boogie-down prowess. At the Blind Pig, 208 S. First St., Ann Arbor; 734-996-8555. $15 admission/$18 for under 21.

The Chenille Sisters
Suffice it to say, if you’ve appeared on Garrison Keillor’s terminally wholesome radio program, A Prairie Home Companion, you are squeaky clean. The Chenille Sisters have, in fact, performed on the bushy-eyebrowed yarn-spinner’s program — and they are the absolute sweethearts of the Ann Arbor folk scene. They’ve been described as “a little bit Andrews Sisters, a little bit Supremes and little bit Roches, with honeyed harmonies from bygone days and a big dose of modern attitude and zany humor” and God knows it couldn’t hurt to end 2006 with a dose of simple silly fun. At the Ark, 316 S. Main St. Ann Arbor; 734-761-1451. $35 per ticket (includes party favors and a Champagne toast).

New Year Jubilee
Hot spots around downtown Ypsilanti will be heated with family frolic this chilly New Year’s Eve. The New Year Jubilee is an expansive family-friendly, alcohol-free fest featuring all sorts of music offerings at a variety of nonbar venues. Highlights include rockabilly from George Bedard & the Kingpins (7:30 p.m. at Emmanuel Lutheran Church, 201 N. River St.; 734-482-7121); Scottish fiddle from Jeremy Kittel (7 p.m. at First Presbyterian Church, 300 N. Washington St.; 734-482-1525); dulcimer player Charlene Berry (7 p.m. at Ypsilanti Historical Museum, 220 N. Huron St.; 734-483-4253); Broadway tunes from the Choral Connection (6:30 p.m. at Riverside Arts Center, 76 N. Huron St.; 734-971-5545); and boogie woogie piano from Mr. B and folk music from Madcat & Kane, Kitty Donohoe and Matt Watroba (8 p.m. at First Methodist Church, 209 Washtenaw Rd.; 734-482-8374). Free shuttles provide transportation between sites all night. Tickets are $20 ($5 kids age 6-16, kids 5 and under free).

Splash Bash
Had a meeting and didn’t take your kid to the circus? Had a deadline and missed the beach? No problem: The Splash Bash is the workaholic’s one-stop get-out-of-parental-purgatory-free card. Book a room, and the kids will have full use of an indoor water park, an obstacle course, an arcade and, by golly, a magician, a clown, and a ventriloquist. So suck it up and ring in the New Year with a toast of (nonalcoholic) bubbly. You can pretend you’re at the golf course (there’s putt-putt) and maybe, just maybe, your kids will actually like you next year. At the Best Western Sterling Inn, 32911 Van Dyke Rd., Sterling Heights; 586-979-1400. $299-$319.

Gluten-free New Year’s Dinner at Bel Cibo Marketplace
Gluten allergies can have devastating effects on a person’s diet, but Bel Cibo in Clawson is not only sympathetic to this gastrointestinal sensitivity (they serve gluten-free dishes), but they make utterly delectable dishes to boot. People with said allergy can celebrate New Year’s sans the emergency room visit with a six-course meal, free favors, hats, balloons and noisemakers. Dinner includes an appetizer of sautéed greens, toasted pine nut polenta and seared fois gras; squash and fontina cheese soup; veal and shiitake mushroom pasta; poached pear salad; plus your choice of Chilean bass, Grand Traverse fillet or roasted game hen. At 220 S. Main St., Clawson; 248-246-6505. $55 for only dinner and $70 for the “all inclusive” package, which includes Champagne split and free admission to nearby Black Lotus Brewing Co.’s New Year’s Eve shindig.

Together We Can New Year’s Eve Dance
You’ll really have to bring your A-Game, because no sloppy social lubricants are allowed: This New Year’s party is a benefit for Together We Can, an Alcoholics Anonymous conference held in March for the LGBT community. Both recovering substance abusers and the serially lucid are invited to dance the night away. From 9 p.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the Drayton Avenue Presbyterian Church, 2441 Pinecrest Ave., Ferndale; 248-399-1423. $7 donation requested.

22nd Annual New Year’s Eve Dance
All members of the Alcoholics Anonymous fellowship are welcome to ring in the New Year at this safe, alcohol-free environment. The usual New Year’s fare can be expected — a DJ, dancing and good eats — but this year-end party is more a celebration of good health and spirit than it is an opportunity to wage war for the body and mind. At Lanse Creuse High School, 23700 21 Mile, Harrison Twp. Call Alcoholic Anonymous at 248-541-6565 for more information. Free.

New Year’s Eve Anusara
Wanna detox from the holiday season a little early and begin 2007 with radiant health, spiritual ease and good karma? Then check out Karma Yoga’s New Year’s Eve workshop and learn about Anusara — a hatha yoga style which follows the tantric belief in daily attainable bliss. Since its creation in 1997, this Eastern philosophy is becoming a popular meditation form in the Western world. So who cares if the event ends well before midnight? In India — the birthplace of yoga — it’ll already be next year. From 7 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. at Karma Yoga, 3683 W. Maple, Bloomfield Twp.; 248-723-9168. $30 per person

NYE at Gameworks
Still haven’t taken that Wii back? Aunt Gertie still in the hospital from your virtual-turned-projectile tennis swing? Feed your inner-tech nerd needs at Gameworks in Auburn Hills. For $25, you can celebrate the new year with live music, party favors, a midnight balloon drop and — most importantly —unlimited video gameplay. Doors at 8 p.m. at 4316 Baldwin Rd., Auburn Hills; 248-745-9675. 21 and older after 10 p.m.