By Eva Mays
There is a new way to ring in the New Year in Mountaineer Country. The NYE Big Bash will be from 8 p.m.-1 a.m. Dec. 31 at the Morgantown Event Center at Morgantown Marriott at Waterfront Place.
The theme is “Denim, Diamonds and Dollars.” There is no dress code. Attendees are encouraged to dress to their comfort level, whether that be a formal or more casual ensemble. The “dollars” referenced in the theme refers to $5,000 in cash prizes that will be given away throughout the night.
The Big Bash is organized by local event management company Guidon Creative.
“It’s going to be the biggest New Year’s Eve party Morgantown’s ever seen,” said founder and CEO Jamie Summerlin. “There will be lots of opportunities for people to have a good time and get back together, which we haven’t been able to do for a long time.”
The non-refundable tickets, which are $75 each or $140 for two, can be purchased through the event website, www.nyebigbash.com. Guests must be at least 21 to attend. Included in the ticket price are hors d’ouevres, games, dancing, party favors and a midnight champagne toast. A cash bar will also be available.
Pittsburgh-based musical group Bastard Bearded Irishmen will perform two full sets of their signature rock-infused Celtic music. There will also be Top 40 and country music provided by area DJs Jason Knight of WVAQ and Mike Vincent of WKKW.
“We are excited to provide the venue for the NYE Big Bash and close out 2021 on a positive note,” said Bert Haifley, general manager of Morgantown Marriott at Waterfront Place.
Those who purchase Big Bash tickets are eligible for a special block rate at the hotel. Guestroom special pricing is available by visiting the event page and then selecting “hotel packages.” In addition to reserving the room package, guests can take advantage of the prex fixe dinner being offered through the hotel’s restaurant, Bourbon Prime.
Summerlin said he and his team are closely monitoring the Monongalia County Health Department for updates on COVID-19 protocols. As of this writing, masks are welcome at the event, but not required. A representative from the Monongalia County Health Department said, “wearing masks is recommended for individuals attending gatherings with a large number of people or even groups of people with whom they do not live or regularly interact. Especially as cases of the very infectious omicron variant of COVID-19 surge, it’s important to take precautions during this holiday season and beyond.”
Summerlin said Morgantown hasn’t had a New Year’s Eve party of this size in a long time. He intends to make it an annual event that will draw attendees from all over the region, which will benefit local businesses. But most importantly, he hopes this event will allow people to “have some fun ringing in a new year, and hopefully a new beginning.”