By Mark Horning

If you live in the Cleveland area you are quite aware that there are no shortages of watering holes in this town. There are some good ones and there are some great ones. With the annual Baccalaurean event we refer to as New Year’s Eve many places will offer special music and events. What follows are some of the top spots in Cleveland to celebrate the dropping of the ball.

Brother’s Lounges
11609 Detroit Ave.
Cleveland, OH
(216) 226-2767
www.brotherslounge.com

Past performers at this Cleveland landmark include Buddy Guy, BB King and Bonnie Raitt. The bar went through some tough times then reopened in 2008 with a brand new look. The bar has great beer on tap and by the bottle as well as wines and cocktail choices. New Year’s Eve will have 50 Amp Fuse performing in the Music Hall.

Nighttown
12383 Cedar Road
Cleveland Heights, OH
(216) 795-0550
www.nighttowncleveland.com

Located around the bend and at the top of Cedar Hill in Cleveland Heights, Nighttown is the stopping place for all the top name entertainers. New Year’s Eve will be no exception as the restaurant will be hosting two performers for a total of four shows in their two entertainment areas. Trumpeter extraordinaire Dominick Farinacci and his group will perform two shows (8 and 10 p.m.) on the Patio Stage featuring songs from his latest CD release Short Stories. Tickets for the show are $40. Ann Cochran (vocalist with Jim Brickman) and Abe LaMarca will bring their seven piece band to Nighttown’s Main Stage for two shows also at 8 and 10 p.m. Tickets for the show are $30. Tickets for both shows are selling fast so order now.

Mahall’s
13200 Madison Ave.
Lakewood, OH
(216) 521-3280
www.mahalls20lanes.com

Ohio’s oldest bowling alley is one of those cool multi-functional places that you love to go and meet friends. It’s a bowling alley. It’s a full service bar. It has a kitchen serving burgers, fries, tacos, house chips, popcorn, hot pretzels and probably the best fried chicken you will ever sink your teeth into. New Year’s Eve is a serious affair at Mahall’s with each year’s party having a theme. The theme for 2016/17 is the Jim Henson, George Lucas film Labyrinth starring David Bowie. Party goers are invited to dress up in their favorite characters from the movie (even the Goblin King) and party like its 1986.

Parnell’s Pub
2167 Lee Road
Cleveland Heights, OH
(216) 321-3469
www.facebook.com/parnellspub

If you have ever been to Ireland you quickly learn that the center of every town, village and city is the neighbor Public House or “Pub.” While many Stateside bars claim to have the spirit of such venerated places, few can measure up. Fortunately, there is Parnell’s Pub in Cleveland Heights (near Cedar Lee Theater). While not overboard on the typical faux Irish decor it’s all about the Guinness and the beer. Known for such frothy posted sayings as “Trust me, you can dance!” Jameson, “No WiFi. Talk to each other. Call your mom. Pretend its 1993” and “Election Night Drinking Game…Drink…Then Keep Drinking!” The usual crowd and new friends will sure to be gathered at Parnell’s Pub on New Year’s Eve when they celebrate the passing of the year twice with a European Toast. The first will be at 7 p.m. (that’s 12 midnight in Dublin, Ireland) and again at the stroke of 12 midnight Cleveland time.

Great Lakes Brewing Company
2516 Market Avenue
Cleveland, OH
(216) 771-4404
www.greatlakesbrewing.com

In 1986, before Ohio City was the trendy cool place to be it was shall we say a bit on the dodgy side. Two Irish twin brothers (Pat and Dan Conway) opened up the first modern microbrewery in Cleveland within spitting distance of Cleveland’s West Side Market. Their dedicated staff of passionate brew meisters developed a diverse selection of craft beers that can be found from one end of the Cuyahoga River to the other and beyond (and that are a long way). Join the crew as they toast the New Year with their special holiday craft beer.

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