Shimmy in the new year 1920s style

New Year’s Eve bashes around town

Ring in the new year twirling your pearls at The Gatsby New Year’s Eve Ball, which organizers promise will match the raucous, larger-than life parties of the 1920s bright young things to help fund a local charity.

The event features acrobats, dancers, jazz bands during the first part of the evening followed by DJs, at the grand hall of the city’s period-built former union station and now Government Conference Centre on Rideau Street.

All of the 800 attendees the space can fill are actively encouraged to wear period costumes, the sparklier the better, so those feathers and fedoras can come out of the closet.

Sponsors include tipple-purveyors Piper-Hiedsieck, Bombay Sapphire, Grey Goose Vodka, Sapporo and Rémy Martin, so high-class versions of Prohibition-era cocktails (not bathtub hooch) will be on offer.

The events is a fundraiser for the Caring and Sharing Exchange, an Ottawa charity which helps families and individuals in need during the holidays and at back-to-school time.

The Gatsby Ball, 10 p.m. to 3 a.m., Tickets: General Admission $75, including champagne toast, complimentary coat check, tasting surprise at midnight. VIP tickets, $95, include above, plus special entrance, networking cocktail from 8 to 10 p.m. including hors’d’oeuvres, gift bag.

Twitter: @natcapitalgala


Other New Year’s Eve events to consider:

- The Sparks Street Mall New Year’s Eve Party and Countdown features performance by K-os, Loon Choir and Cardboard Crowns, fireworks, a Maple Leaf drop and more. Free.

- Celebrate Hogmanay at City Hall with the Scottish Society of Ottawa, with events from 6 p.m. for the whole family, including fireworks, skating, pipe bands and other musicians, dancing and Scottish food, beer and whisky. Free.

- Rick Chiarelli’s alcohol-free Family New Year’s Eve Party features fireworks and a Prince and Princess theme (costumes welcome), 6 to 10 p.m., Ben Franklin Place, 101 Centrepointe Dr. Free.

- Zaphod Beeblebrox hosts its annual The Legendary No Stress New Year’s Eve Party, 8 p.m., 27 York St. $10,

- Dancing in the Stars is the theme for the Ottawa Convention Centre’s NYE party, featuring a midnight buffet ($75) and music from The Universal Boogie Band, 9 p.m. A ticket including an earlier dinner at 6 p.m. as well is also available ($159).

- The 3rd Annual New Year’s Eve Comedy Night with performers Andy Chapman, DeAnne Smith, Amanda Brooke Perrin comes as show only, or with dinner (early or late) at Darcy McGee’s on Centrum Boulevard, Shenkman Arts Centre, $45.25 for show only.


Jazz Age Lexicon to help you fit in:

applesauce: flattery

beat session: gossip session between two men

his/her blue serge: his/her romantic partner

burning with a blue flame: drunk, also blotto, boiled as an owl, half-shot, half-screwed, polluted and loaded to the muzzle — among others

cancelled stamp: a wallflower

cutting yourself a piece of cake: making yourself wait patiently

dead soldier: empty container of alcohol

dimbox: a taxi, “Burning with a blue flame, we grabbed a dimbox and headed for poutine.”

dogs: feet, “My dogs are barking from all this dancing.”

the duck’s quack: utterly cool or awesome, also the cat’s pyjamas/particulars, kitten’s ankles, the frog’s eyebrows, the eel’s hip

finale hopper: one who arrives after the bill has been paid

frolic pad: dance or night club

gimlet: a bore

goof: sweetheart, “My goof treats me right.”

Ish Kabibble!: who cares or no worries!

kluck: dumb, but happy

lalapazaza: a good sport

munitions: face powder and rouge (makeup)

togged to the bricks: dressed up

static: conversations that mean nothing, go nowhere

urban set: a new dress

whangdoodle: jazz-band music

from A Flapper’s Dictionary, 1922, via

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