The New Year signals new beginnings and the hope for health and prosperity in the coming days. As such, it should be marked by more than the Rose Bowl and a bowl of black-eyed peas.
Celebrate with the ones you love most at one of these local parties:
Convito Cafe and Market, Wilmette. Usher in the New Year at an old favorite. Convito offers seating until 10 p.m. with several specials, like lobster risotto, rack of lamb, beef tenderloin and mahi mahi in Champagne sauce. Make a reservation soon, and save room for the poached pears.
. The kids in your life might enjoy an Italian buffet and a dramatic countdown clock - nevermind that they'll be counting down to 8 p.m., rather than midnight, at Go Roma. Go Roma says that sparkling cider, party hats and noisemakers will make the kids' night complete. Reservations are required.
Hyatt Hotel, Deerfield. Consider a staycation in Deerfield, where the Hyatt is offering overnight guests champagne and chocolate covered strawberries, as well as breakfast buffet passes for two. Start your proverbial New Year's diet Jan. 2.
Johnny's Kitchen and Tap, Glenview. Champagne and lobster bisque isn't for everyone. Johnny's Kitchen and Tap is offering its signature roasted meats and apple pie a la mode for New Year's Eve, along with live music by John Truncali.
Kohl Children's Museum, Glenview. Members of the Kohl Children's Museum will celebrate long before the sun goes down at their annual mid-day New Year's Eve events. There will be live music by Mindy Hester and the Time Outs, an opportunity to make party hats, and a dramatic countdown to midnight with a confetti drop. It doesn't get any better than that for the young at heart.
. A three-course steak and lobster dinner for two, along with a bottle of Champagne, sounds divine - AND it's affordable, but it's only available with a reservation. Pair it with an overnight stay at the Renaissance Chicago North Shore Hotel to celebrate safely and with great style.
2nd Street Bistro, Highland Park. This upscale American bistro relies on local sources and the principles of sustainability to guide its menu. Reservations are required if you want to BYOB to this New Year's Eve party for a four-course tasting menu, dancing and party favors. An earlier three-course dinner package is also available.