Get in the spirit with holiday events, light displays, and celebrations throughout Virginia's Blue Ridge.
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The best thing about New Year’s Eve this year is that it’s the final day of 2020, which we’re all looking forward to leaving in the past!
As we celebrate the arrival of the New Year and look to better times to come, there are some special ways to end the year in Virginia’s Blue Ridge, both with traditional activities and new types of socially-distanced celebrations.
Here is a preview of 2020 New Year’s Eve events in Virginia’s Blue Ridge.
Historic Fincastle | Time: 11:30 p.m. - 12:30 a.m.
The ringing of the bells on New Year’s Eve in Historic Fincastle is a classic holiday tradition in Virginia’s Blue Ridge. In a ceremony that has taken place for over 150 years, the town pays its respects to the end of the dying year and celebrates the arrival of the new year. The following is an excerpt from the Town of Fincastle website, describing the various parts of the tradition:
"At fifteen minutes until midnight the tolling begins. The bell in the Court House is struck and afterwards, at twelve second intervals, bells of the churches ring in a clockwise order about the town: Presbyterian, Baptist, Methodist, and Episcopal. This continues until the bell at the Court House strikes twelve. Taps are played to signify respect for the dying year. The bell-ringers in the Court House then strike the digits of the New Year - for example, one, nine, nine, eight. Then, three shotgun blasts indicate that it is time for bells to joyously welcome the New Year by ringing for an additional ten minutes."
Mountain Lake Lodge
Celebrate the new year with a romantic getaway to the beautiful Mountain Lake Lodge, which is offering a special Forever Young in 2021 Package. Your visit will include a 1-night stay at the resort, a New Year's Eve dinner at HARVEST, the on-site restaurant, NYE party favors, a champagne toast at midnight, and breakfast in HARVEST on New Year's Day. There will also be a live jazz ensemble playing music during the New Year's Eve dinner.
The Park | Time: 5:00 - 10:00 p.m.
The 43rd annual New Year's Eve Bash at The Park will be celebrated differently this year and in abbreviated fashion, but will still offer the opportunity to enjoy a happy hour, dinner, entertaining shows, and a fabulous time! There will be three shows at 7:00, 8:00, and 9:00 p.m. and dinner is included with all tickets.
Jump Into Mystery | Time: 8:00 p.m. - 10:30 p.m.
Jump Into Mystery will host a virtual New Year’s Eve Murder Mystery event on Zoom that is a great way to safely celebrate the evening from the comfort of your own home! Participants will receive a character role in advance (this will be emailed along with the Zoom link) and party attire is strongly encouraged.
419 West | Time: Open until 10:00 p.m.
Reserve your space for an amazing New Year's Eve dinner at 419 West, with a special menu that will include an 8 oz. filet, roasted lobster tail, mashed potatoes, and asparagus for $37.99. This is available for dine-in or carry-out.
The Inn at Virginia Tech & Skelton Conference Center | Time: 5:00 - 7:00 p.m.
Preston’s Restaurant at The Inn at Virginia Tech & Skelton Conference Center will be offering the opportunity to finish the year in style with a delicious plated dinner and Champagne toast. Reservations, which are required, are available from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m.
The Hotel Roanoke & Conference Center | Time: 6:00 - 9:00 p.m.
The Hotel Roanoke & Conference Center will be ringing in the new year with an elegant New Year's Eve celebration and dinner at The Regency Room Restaurant. The evening will include a four-course prix fixe plated dinner and party favors. You could also turn the evening into an overnight stay and book a special package.
If you're not comfortable attending an in-person event, The Regency Room is also offering a special New Year's To Go Celebration Meal >
Corned Beef & Company | Time: Call for Reservations
Finish off 2020 with a great meal and fun time at Corned Beef & Company in Downtown Roanoke. The restaurant's New Year's Eve Dinner Special features an 8 oz. sirloin, shrimp skewer, cheddar mashed potatoes, and a house salad for $22.95. You could also add on a dessert or bottle of champagne for some extra indulgence.
Call (540) 342-3354 for Reservations.
Rockfish Food & Wine | Time: Call for Reservations
Rockfish Food & Wine in Roanoke's Grandin Village is one of the best food & drink experiences in Virginia's Blue Ridge, and a great option for celebrating New Year's Eve. The special NYE Menu includes items like Belgian Seafood Stew, Coconut Crusted Salmon, or a Tomahawk Pork Chop au Poivre, and you can pair each course with a perfect glass of wine. And don't forget to grab a bottle of wine to go for your midnight toast.
The River & Rail | Time: 5:00 - 8:30 p.m.
The River & Rail will be celebrating New Year's Eve with a special prix-fixe 3-course dinner. The dinner is $75 per person, and an additional $30 for wine pairings with each course. Seatings are available from 5:00 - 8:30 p.m. and reservations are filling up quickly.
Billy's | Time: Begins at 5:00 p.m.
Say goodbye to 2020 with a celebratory dinner and drinks at Billy's in Downtown Roanoke. Sip an old fashioned by the firepit in the outdoor courtyard and then treat yourself to dishes like prime rib and crab cakes for an evening of luxury.
Frankie Rowland's Steakhouse | Time: 5:00 - 10:00 p.m.
What better way to end 2020 than with a night that includes a pineapple martini, oysters, a cowboy ribeye, and bread pudding at Frankie Rowland's Steakhouse? Call (540) 527-2333 to make your reservations or to place your order for curbside pickup.
Three Notch'd Craft Kitchen & Brewery | Time: Call for reservations
Finish the year with a delicious meal and craft beer at Three Notch'd Craft Kitchen & Brewery in Downtown Roanoke. The menu will feature special creations by Chef Sam Martin. Call (540) 492-5005 to reserve your table.
Local Roots | Time: 5:00 - 8:30 p.m.
Local Roots - A Farm-to-Table Restaurant in Roanoke's Grandin Village will host a special 3-course New Year's Eve Dinner. The menu includes a choice of entrees like Virginia Striped Bass, Cioppino, and Strip Steak. It's $60 per guest and reservations are required.
Explore Park | Time: 5:00 p.m. - 10:00 p.m.
New Year’s Eve is one of the final opportunities of the season to take part in the magic of Illuminights at Explore Park! The ½ mile winter walk through the woods features over 500,000 lights and some dazzling holiday displays. Tickets must be purchased in advance and we recommend getting yours as quickly as possible as many nights have been selling out.
Natural Bridge State Park | Time: 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
As part of your visit to Natural Bridge State Park, stop by the Visitor Center to see the display of the 5th annual Festival of Trees. There are a collection of trees that were decorated by local businesses and organizations and it’s a great spot for some last-minute holiday photos.
Franklin County Recreation Park | Time: 5:30 p.m. - 9:30 p.m.
You can celebrate New Year’s Eve without even having to leave the car when you visit the Land of Lights at Franklin County Recreation Park. New Year’s Eve will be the penultimate night for this special Christmas light display, which winds through a ½ mile paved loop through the park and also features holiday music if you tune your radio to 107.7 FM.
Virginia State Parks
Opt outside for the first day of 2021 and take part in the First Day Hike New Year Challenge, organized by Virginia State Parks. They’ve organized a First Day Hike Challenge and First Day Hike Photo Contest on their website, as well as some great resources and ideas for activities when visiting any of the 39 Virginia State Parks on January 1.
In Virginia’s Blue Ridge, we recommend checking out some of the fantastic trails at any of the five state parks in our region: Claytor Lake, Douthat, Fairy Stone, Natural Bridge, and Smith Mountain Lake.
Martin’s Downtown Bar & Grill | Time: 11:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Kick off the New Year with a holiday brunch at Martin’s Downtown Bar & Grill in Downtown Roanoke! You can feast on tasty brunch dishes like chicken & waffles, corn flake crusted French toast, steak & eggs, and pickle infused bloody marys. Reservations are strongly recommended.
Sidecar | Time: 11:00 a.m.
If you haven't been to Sidecar, you're missing out on one of the best new dining experiences in Downtown Roanoke in Virginia's Blue Ridge! Sidecar features European-style cuisine and unique spirits, which will be showcased in its special New Year's Day Holiday Brunch with dishes like steak frites & eggs, croque madame, and a full English breakfast.