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Illustration by Gregg Bender | The Journal Gazette

Crank up the party

Sawyer Brown will perform at the Wagon Wheel Theatre in Warsaw.
Urban Legend will play New Year’s Eve at Memorial Coliseum. Back row, from left, Tony Zuber, Mike Rogers, Mark Gevaart, and Matt Schory. Front row, Mike DuPuis, Lisa McDavid and Lisa Loza

Making the decision to go out Tuesday for New Year’s Eve is the first step. The second, where to ring in the new year, still remains.

With plenty of local venues offering creative themes and a variety of cuisines, Mark Gevaart, bassist and host for local R&B ensemble Urban Legend, says the determining factor for many celebrations is the music.

“Music is just as important as atmosphere and the party itself,” he says. “We (Urban Legend) just want to take and make it just what the audience wants.”

Urban Legend will be performing at the New Year’s Eve Masquerade Party on Tuesday at Memorial Coliseum. The band is wrapping a year that was full of festivals and shows across the area, and lead vocalists Lisa McDavid and Lisa Loza and the band’s musicians have created a playlist that consists of Motown and R&B classics. The band will play a soulful, modernized rendition of the traditional “Auld Lang Syne” when the clock strikes 12.

Gevaart says that music, along with the ornate masks, creates a fun and mysterious evening.

“We’re excited about it. We are not going to rip the roof off at the beginning; we have some great musicians and great vocalists that will perform some nice and easy music that will build up during the evening,” he says. “People are going to hear some smooth jams with lots of energy, and you will dance – whether you wanted to or not.”

Here are some local New Year’s Eve parties that range from posh to pub.

Masquerade Party featuring Urban Legend: Bring in the new year with some mystery and dancing; Memorial Coliseum, 4000 Parnell Ave.; doors open at 9 p.m.; $57 includes free parking and meal; Call 302-1124 or go to for tickets.

Philmore on Broadway featuring Last Call: Enjoy a three-course meal by Affine Food Truck and a wide range of music that Last Call will perform until 9 p.m.; 2441 Broadway St.; $60 for first seating including the meal, $25 for second seating at 9:30 p.m.; call 745-1000 or go to for reservations.

YLNI Masquerade Ball: Get decked out in “Great Gatsby”-inspired attire for a Young Leaders of Northeast Indiana event; Grand Wayne Center, 120 W. Jefferson Blvd.; doors open at 9 p.m.; $45 for nonmembers, $40 members and $65 VIP; must be 21 and over; go to to buy tickets.

New Year’s Eve at J.K. O’Donnell’s: Featuring Rhapsody in Wax; get a head start with a New Year’s toast at 7 p.m. for Ireland’s midnight celebration, then grab another glass for a midnight toast in the States; 7 p.m. to midnight; call 420-5563 for more information.

New Year’s Eve at Club Soda: Grab a table and listen to the music of West Central Quartet; 235 E. Superior St.; 9:30 p.m.; call 426-3442 or go to for reservations.

Freakdown to 2014: Party with the funky Freak Brothers; Ceruti’s Banquet and Event Center, 6325 Illinois Road; doors open at 8 p.m.; $20 admission includes hors d’oeuvres, champagne toast, balloon drop and party favors; call 207-2000 or go to to buy tickets.

New Year’s Eve Party at Don Hall’s Guesthouse Hotel: Featuring Paul Stewart with Brian & JJ McCoy; kick off your evening with the prime rib buffet from 7 to 9 p.m., and enjoy entertainment in the grand ballroom afterward; 1313 W. Washington Center Road; $44.50 singles, $89 couples; overnight packages available; call 489-2524 or go to

Champagne Life at Legends Ultra Lounge: Featuring DJ Tee Cee, Big Kess, Uncle Woody and DJ Beach; dress to impress and prepare yourself for a midnight balloon drop; 4104 N. Clinton St.; $20 singles, $35 couples; VIP packages available; call 304-382-3060 for more information or go to to buy tickets.

Piere’s New Year’s Eve Bash: With Hip Kitty; get your rock fix along with a helping of Piere’s breakfast buffet; 5629 St. Joe Road; $15; call 486-1979 or go to for more information.

New Year’s Eve with Sawyer Brown: Give your New Year’s Eve a country twist at the Wagon Wheel Theatre, 2515 E. Center St. in Warsaw; $43 to $62 general admission; call 574-267-8041 or go to

Other events

Science Central’s Countdown to Noon: For the little ones who may be tucked in bed by midnight, enjoy Science Central’s New Year’s Eve-themed daytime activities; 1950 N. Clinton St.; 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; regular admission is $8 for adults and children ages 3 to 12, $7 seniors and free for members and children ages 2 and younger; go to for more information.

Roller Dome New Year’s Skate: The not-so-late skate for younger children will be from 1 to 4 p.m., followed by the all-night skate from 7:30 p.m. to 5 a.m..; 444 W. Coliseum Blvd.; $10 admission for New Year’s Skate, $22 for all-night skate; call 483-6303 or go to

Fort Wayne Komets vs. Toledo Walleye: Wait for the puck to drop at 7:30 p.m. as the Komets take on the Walleye; Memorial Coliseum, 4000 Parnell Ave.; $13 to $26 adults, $11 to $21 seniors and students ages 12 to 18, and $8 to $16 for children ages 12 and younger; call 800-745-3000 or go to