Celebrating New Year’s Eve in comfort 1

Ringing in the start of the new year shouldn’t be stressful, so celebrate the most comfortable way you know how — from the comfort of your own home!

Have you had your fill of the Times Square mob scene? Are you fed up with long lines at overpriced restaurants? Are you fearful of all the crazies out on the roads?

Well, there is an alternative for New Year’s Eve ... and it’s called staying home.

Boring, you say? Well, it doesn’t have to be, as evidenced by some memorable celebrations shared by our Queens Chronicle readers.

Larry Bloom of Kew Gardens Hills recalled when he and a number of friends had what they called a stay party. “Every person had to bring a food item. I invited a friend, who cooked on a wok. Another had a lot of music on records. We all stayed in. We played party games and charades. And it was terrific.”

After a lifetime of painting the town, Cecilia Vaicels, a long-time resident of Bellerose, is looking forward to a quiet evening with her husband Charlie.

“We are returning to an old tradition,” she said. “It will be just the two of us. At home! All alone! We’ll have a steak and lobster dinner, talk, watch a little television, see the ball come down declaring the beginning of 2020 and go to bed. It will be lovely.”

Joe Riley of Forest Hills recommends what he calls a “really fun and low pressure” evening, one which he has shared in the past with his siblings. They order in Chinese food, watch the “Twilight Zone” marathon on television, reminisce, laugh, drink, toast the new year and have a sleepover.

Folks from outside the borough have their own individual ways of welcoming a new year. Grace Guidotti Matranga, who lives in the Bronx, recalled that her husband’s friends used to “do a progressive party, which I really enjoyed.” Several of them lived in the same building, so it was easy to arrange, she said.

“We’d start off with cocktails and appetizers in one apartment,” she explained. “Then, the main course in another and finish with dessert and champagne wishes in the last.”

It was “a cool and unique idea,” Guidotti Matranga said. “Something like you’d see on ‘Friends.’“

Jennifer Cove, who lives in Huntington, recalled what she describes as one of the most comfortable ways to spend the evening.

“A few years back, a few friends and I did a pajama party. We went to one house in pajamas, ordered a pizza, played board games, watched the ball drop and slept right there on the floor,” said Cove.

As opposed to dealing with the bustle of spending the evening with the New Year’s Eve crowds, Cove said it was all “very relaxing.”

Happy New Year, everyone!

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