Downtown Bangor is inviting everyone to join in their virtual New Year's Eve Party.

UPDATE: We need to make a correction: WABI-TV reports Paddy Murphy's will NOT toss the traditional lighted beach ball off their building this year, out of public safety concerns.

It's a different New Year's Eve, with bars and restaurants closed before midnight. But that doesn't mean you can't still celebrate the evening with entertainment and fun. The Downtown Bangor Partnership is hoping you'll start the evening by dining in one of their quality restaurants, that will be open until 9 p.m. It's a chance to have a delicious meal and gives you an excuse to get all dressed up.

After dinner, you can head home and get back into your comfy clothes, snuggle up with some warm blankets, and watch the fun online. The event is free and accessible on the YouTube channels and Facebook pages of the Bangor Public Library, Versant Power Astronomy Center and Maynard Jordan Planetarium, the Challenger Learning Center, Fields Pond Audubon Center in Holden, Maine Discovery Museum, Thomas School of Dance, and the Bangor Symphony Orchestra.

Some of the entertainment includes a cooking demonstration for New Year's Eve snacks, Matt Marcy Magic, a variety show, and more. The owners of Paddy Murphy's say they won't be tossing the lighted beach ball this year, out of respect for public safety. So, here's a video of the ball drop from 2012 that you can watch at midnight instead.

Maybe it's my age, but I really like this idea. After a nice dinner, I can go home, put on my favorite flannel pajamas, and be entertained by local artists. Then, at midnight, I can kiss my husband without dealing with icicles on his mustache. (temps in the low 20's Thursday night) Thanks to all the local organizations and merchants, plus the Downtown Bangor Partnership for giving us a fun way to usher in 2021. Here's hoping it's a far better year than 2020.

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