By Chad Clem
ELKINS - Tuesday is New Year's Eve, and the area offers a dazzling variety of opportunities to celebrate the closing of one year and the beginning of another.
- The Gandy Dancer Theatre is presenting a murder mystery dinner show called "Dinner by Eight, Dead by Nine," which includes audience interaction.
The show, which was also performed in November, features a different ending for this production. Dinner includes chicken cordon bleu, spaghetti and meatballs, rolls and dessert. The show itself runs about two hours. Tickets include dinner, the show, gratuity and tax. Doors open at 6:30 p.m., and the dinner show will start at 7 p.m. No alcohol will be served at the event.
"Come out for a night of good, clean fun," said G'na Stephens, the theatre's chief executive officer of direct marketing and a member of the cast. "Every murder mystery dinner that the Gandy puts on has played to sell-out crowds and we're expecting this to be the same."
- Beander's Bar in Elkins is celebrating the end of the year with Rustic Highways, a country/rock band out of Morgantown, which will be performing from 9:30 p.m. to 1:30 a.m. Patrons can enjoy beverages, food, hats, noisemakers, a champagne toast and hand-rolled sushi, as well as all-you-can spaghetti and meatballs as the party continues into 2014.
There is a cover charge at the door.
"We pride ourselves on always keeping a fun, clean atmosphere," said Manager Desire Watson. "We've got a full slate of events scheduled, not just for the holidays but throughout the winter months."
- Duke's Steakhouse is also offering a prime rib dinner for patrons that includes their choice of potato salad or vegetables. Duke's will be open until 10 p.m. on New Year's Eve as well as - for the first time ever - on New Year's Day. This event targets those who want to celebrate with a quiet dinner.
- Many of the resorts in the area are ringing in the new year, including Canaan Valley Resort State Park, which is holding two separate party options. The Family Bash includes dinner from 6 to 8 p.m. The menu includes tossed salad, fresh fruit salad, macaroni salad, apple sauce or Jell-O salad and baked chicken, stuffed pork chops, popcorn shrimp and hushpuppies, beef pot roast, chicken tenders, macaroni and cheese, mashed potatoes and gravy and fresh-steamed vegetables. Desserts include cake, pies, cookies and more. Dinner is served in the Balsam and Spruce Rooms.
Music, games and prizes are provided by Sounds of Fun, an entertainment group, and a cider toast will be provided at midnight.
The second party is the New Year's Eve Buffet and Lounge Party. Dinner is served from 6 p.m to 10 p.m. and includes various salads, soups, entrees like lobster-stuffed beef tenderloin and pepper-crusted ahi tuna and dessert.
Tickets for adults include admission to the Laurel Lounge Party, featuring the Nina Sharp Band from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. Guests under the age of 21 are not permitted into the lounge.
Reservations for both the Family Bash and the New Year's Eve Buffet & Lounge are required and there is limited availability for both events. For reservations, call 304-866-4121 ext. 2651.
- Blackwater Falls State Park is also offering a celebration for patrons in the area. The park's New Year's Eve Buffet offers an hors d'oeuvre dinner, with entertainment provided by DJ Dan Barkley, and a cash bar. The event will take place in Harr Lodge from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m.
For more information, call 304-259-5216.
- Stonewall Resort is offering a special dinner in Stillwaters Restaurant on New Year's Eve as well as a special performance at T.J. Muskie's Lounge by local talent Steve Stalnaker. A separate dinner and dance will be held in Lightburn's Restaurant at the Palmer Course.
For more information on the events at Stonewall Resort, call 304-269-7400.
- Snowshoe Resort is ringing in the New Year and celebrating its 40th anniversary at the same time by opening up its entire village into a party.
"No matter where you go, there will be something going on," said Tom Brennan, director of Food and Beverage at Snowshoe Resort.
There are events for young and old, including the Connection Night Club New Year's Eve Bash with live entertainment provided by the Davisson Brothers Band and the lodge's house DJ, party favors and a champagne toast at midnight; the 20 Below Club, open to teens and young adults ages 16 through 20 with snacks, complimentary non-alcoholic beverages, games, give-a-ways and lots of dancing and a cider toast at midnight; and the Big Top New Year's Celebration, which includes music, Eurobungy, a climbing wall, inflatables, a strolling magician and pizza.
If none of those strike your fancy, visitors can also check out Hoot's Pub New Year's Eve Party with a DJ and a countdown to the New Year, or the Snowshoe Village Block Party in the Village Plaza with dueling DJ's and a live broadcast of the ball drop, while patrons enjoy hot cider, hot chocolate and lots of dancing. Children can enjoy the Split Rock Pool Party which includes pizza snacks and movies or the Little Tykes NYE Celebration, which is a party just for little ones featuring movies, playtime, storytelling crafts and more.
For more information on the events at Snowshoe Mountain Resort, call 1-877-441-4386.
- For those who are not afraid to travel, and want a more formal affair, Seven Springs Mountain Resort in Seven Springs, Pa., is serving up their Smokin' Hot New Year's Eve Celebration in Mardi Gras style, which includes hors d'oeuvres, dinner, two drink tickets per person, house music by DJ Digital Dave and music by Ted Hefko's New Orleans Jazz Band, dancing, party favors, and "traditional midnight libations."
Dinner includes asparagus and lobster salad and a duel entree including fillet of beef with wild mushroom and mustard cream with halibut with grapes and fried leeks.
Tickets are available per couple or per person. All attendees must be at least 21 years of age and must adhere to the dress code, which includes cocktail attire (jackets for men, dresses for women).
For more information, call 1-877-441-4386.