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The Best Things To Do In LA And SoCal This New Year's Weekend: Dec. 31 - Jan. 2

A parade float depicting a woman in a helmet in a NASA JPL rocket ship moves through the streets, in front of a crowd of onlookers in nearby bleachers.
The city of La Cañada Flintridge float from the 2017 Tournament of Roses Parade.
(Alberto E. Rodriguez
Getty Images)
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Watch a star-studded comedy show online to laugh in 2022. View Grand Park’s NYE celebration from the comfort of your home. Check out the Rose Parade floats up close. Suit up and take part in a polar bear plunge.

With COVID-19 variants rising, many events are being canceled or postponed. It's best to check ahead of time to make sure of event status and vaccine/testing requirements.

Friday, Dec. 31; 8:30 p.m. PT

NYE Comedy Mega Show 2022 Livestream
This annual show is usually held live and in-person in Oakland. But this year, again because of the ‘rona, the event goes live online to a wider audience. The lineup includes Maria Bamford, Atsuko Okatsuka, Caleb Hearon, Andrew Michaan, Brent Weinbach, and hosts Natasha Leggero and Moshe Kasher. VIP Zoom tickets allow attendees to see everyone else, be part of the show, and stick around for the post-show hangout. This event is all ages, but there will be adult content.
COST: $15 - $25; MORE INFO

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DJ John Summit headlines a night of music at the Palladium.
(Courtesy: Insomniac Events)

Friday, Dec. 31; 8 p.m.

John Summit: New Year’s Eve
Hollywood Palladium 
6215 Sunset Blvd., Hollywood
Chicago’s John Summit headlines a night of DJs — Lee Foss, Kyle Walker, and BONES — who spin tunes into the new year.
COST: Tickets start at $51; MORE INFO

Friday, Dec. 31; 9 p.m.

Catch One NYE
Catch One
4067 W. Pico Blvd., Arlington Heights
The historic nightclub features an NYE lineup on multiple stages with Chet Faker (DJ set) and performances by Boys Noize, Rinzen, Marques Wyatt, Anthony Naples and others.
COST: Tickets start at $89; MORE INFO

Friday, Dec. 31; 11 p.m.

Grand Park’s NYELA Countdown to 2022
Grand Park’s New Year’s Eve event will not include a live audience, but will continue to be produced as a broadcast and streaming program, accessible to everyone on Fuse and on Grand Park’s YouTube channel. The event features headliner Kinky, additional musical performances, and the celebration's signature countdown video projection onto L.A.’s iconic City Hall building.

The 'little orchestra' Pink Martini plays two shows at Walt Disney Concert Hall on New Year's Eve.
(Chris Hornbecker)

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Friday, Dec. 31; 7 and 10:30 p.m.

New Year’s Eve with Pink Martini
Walt Disney Concert Hall
111 S. Grand Ave., downtown L.A.
The Portland-based little orchestra plays two shows on New Year’s Eve with Thomas M. Lauderdale, piano & bandleader, alongside vocalists China Forbes, Storm Large, Ari Shapiro, Edna Vazquez, and Cantor Ida Rae Cahana.
COST: Tickets start at $71; MORE INFO

The Trader Joe's float participates in the 131st Rose Parade in Pasadena, California, January 1, 2020.
(ROBYN BECK/AFP via Getty Images

Saturday, Jan. 1 - Sunday, Jan.2

Sierra Madre Blvd. & Washington Blvd., Pasadena
After the Rose Parade, check out the floral works of art up close. See the details, design and workmanship that went into each float. No pets or bikes allowed. Floatfest will be held rain or shine.

Saturday, Jan. 1; 7:30 p.m.

QT Exploitation Fest 
New Beverly Cinema
7165 Beverly Blvd., Beverly Grove
This movie marathon features four explosive feature films selected by Quentin Tarantino, plus vintage trailers and shorts. The titles remain top secret until they are revealed on screen. The show is sold out online, but there will be a standby line for any seats that may become available at showtime. COST: $25; MORE INFO

Saturday, Jan. 1; 4 p.m.

Night of the Comet
Los Feliz Theatre
1822 N. Vermont Ave., Los Feliz
American Cinematheque screens this 1984 horror comedy in which a comet has destroyed most of the Earth’s population. Two high school Valley girls, played by Catherine Mary Stewart and Kelli Maroney, remain to fight zombies. A Q&A follows with Maroney. Co-presented by Beyond Fest & Cinematic Void. COST: $12; MORE INFO 

Catch Craft Contemporary's latest exhibitions before they close on Jan. 9.
(Courtesy of Craft Contemporary)

Through Sunday, Jan. 9, 2022

Craft Contemporary Exhibitions
Craft Contemporary Museum
5814 Wilshire Blvd., Mid-Wilshire
The museum’s current exhibitions — Pouya Afshar: The Charm of the Unfamiliar; Witch Craft: Rethinking Power; and Consuelo Flores: The Roots of Our Resistance, Altar — are closing soon. View them Wednesdays through Sundays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. (The museum will close at 3 p.m. on New Year’s Eve.)
COST: $7 - $9; MORE INFO

People participate in a New Year's Day plunge into the Atlantic Ocean off of Coney Island on Jan. 1, 2021 in Brooklyn, New York City. Despite the annual Polar Bear Plunge being cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, dedicated bathers still took part in the tradition.
(Stephanie Keith/Getty Images
Getty Images North America)

Outdoor Pick

Polar Bear Swim and Dip
3800 Stephen M. White Dr., San Pedro 
The Cabrillo Beach Polar Bears invite the public to join them in their annual swim. The day begins with a ceremony to crown the new king and queen at 11:30 a.m., followed by the swim at noon. Bring your own thermos with hot beverages for after the swim and use proper face coverings until heading for the water.

TV/Streaming Pick

Miley’s New Year’s Eve Party Hosted by Miley Cyrus and Pete Davidson
If you want something different to watch other than Ryan Seacrest or Anderson Cooper counting down to 2022, tune into NBC for an all-star celebration hosted by Miley Cyrus and Pete Davidson of Saturday Night Live. The dynamic duo will surely bring laughs and surprises as the year comes to a close. The special airs live from Miami on NBC on Friday from 10:30 p.m.-12:30 a.m. (Eastern) on NBC and Peacock.

Lilly Rose at the Wayfarer in downtown L.A. offers a holiday tea.
(Eddie Sanchez)

Dine and Drink Deals

Check out the 411 on restaurant, bar, and food happenings in SoCal this weekend:

  • Lilly Rose at Wayfarer Hotel DTLA offers a New Year’s Eve tea from 2 to 6 p.m. with holiday treats and special releases from Dammann Tea. Tickets are $50 per person and reservations are required.
  • Sugar Palm at Viceroy Santa Monica offers dinner, bar bites, and live entertainment on the poolside outdoor patio on Dec. 31 to ring in 2022. There’s a three-course prix fixe menu available ($99 per guest), and from 10 p.m. to midnight an a la carte bar menu of small shareables will be offered.
  • All locations of Fat Sal's Deli & Sandwich Shop are offering a secret sandwich menu for NYE revelers ringing in the New Year. Available only from midnight-3 a.m. (as New Year’s Eve turns into New Year’s Day) the never-released Fat Sal's secret menu includes The Fat Cordon Bleu and The Pepperoni Pizza Burger.
  • Order a “Hungover AF” Breakfast Burrito Box on New Year’s Day from Tacos AF for pick up in downtown L.A. or delivery through Uber Eats. The $20 box contains two Deluxe Breakfast Burritos with chorizo, sausage, bacon, hashbrown, cheese and egg, salsa + guacamole on the side, plus two Jarritos sodas and extra random goodies. The kit is only available on New Year's Day until sold out.
  • Lunetta Restaurant in Santa Monica offers a New Year’s Menu with seatings at 5 and 6:30 p.m. with an a la carte menu, and at 7 and 9:30 with a four-course, prix-fixe menu ($175 per person) plus live entertainment. The menu features classics such as lobster Thermidor and rack of lamb, and house starters of cured gravlax and caviar. 
  • Angelini Osteria is taking reservations for a New Year’s Eve three-course dine-in menu ($115 per person) with tons of options, including its Lasagna Verde "Nonna Elvira." For those staying in, there’s also a $95/person takeout menu available.
  • Hotel Figueroa’s indoor and outdoor spaces will be transformed for The World Is Yours NYE Party. The night features entertainment throughout the night, including DJs, fire dancers, aerialists, live musicians, and a midnight complimentary champagne toast. Tickets ($100–$7,500) include a five-hour open bar, as well as options for VIP and first-class table service. 
  • On New Year’s Eve, Akasha in Culver City offers steakhouse-style dinner items in addition to its regular menu. The restaurant also offers a Fried Chicken Feast all weekend, plus brunch specials.  
  • Pasta|Bar in Encino offers a decadent NYE dinner celebration ($295) with special items such as Demi sec tomatoes with mozzarella and caviar; grilled lobster with matsutake mushroom, caramelized pineapple, truffle; pigeon with salsify, grilled negi, foie gras; and A5 wagyu with kimchi, shiso, beef fat. Arrive 30 minutes before dinner for a complimentary welcome drink. You can make reservations (and put down a $50 deposit) via TOCK.
  • ​​Dia de Los Reyes (Three Kings Day) is on Jan. 6, and all 12 locations of La Monarca Bakery offer the traditional Rosca de Reyes cakes. These brioche dough circle-shaped desserts are studded with dried fruit and nuts to symbolize the jeweled crowns worn by the three wise men. Cakes are $24 for medium, $40 for large.
Got an event in Southern California you want us to consider for one of our event roundups?
Send us the basic info — who, what, when, where, cost, URL and event description — at least a week in advance. We can't guarantee your listing will make it to publication but we'd love to read your pitch.

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