On New Year’s Eve, Open Space for Arts & Community will let islanders alternate between revelry and rejuvenation at its annual Re(New)al Year’s Eve party, starting at 8 p.m. Monday, Dec. 31.
While Open Space has hosted a New Year’s Eve celebration for several years, the event changed last year, after the venue unveiled an extensive renovation that opened up more possibilities for the party. This year, the focus will again remain on letting islanders choose their own adventures in the sprawling space.
“We’re excited to let people build their own New Year’s Eve experience,” said David Godsey, co-founder of the venue. “They might start the night contemplating the past year in the sound immersion room and then welcome the New Year by rocking out with our performers and DJs on the dance floor. All the experiences are there, but you get to mix and match them.”
Half of Open Space will be dedicated to revelry, said Godsey. There will be dancing with deejays until 2 a.m. and a chance to enjoy adult beverages both in a VIP Lounge and elsewhere. The island band, One More Mile, led by island guitar god Jason Lollar, will also be on hand to rock the house with its trademark combination of Northwest blues and funk.
But the other half of the arts center will be dedicated to more meditative experiences and rejuvenation, with rooms and spaces devoted to activities such as sound immersion, a “sensory roller coaster” experience, and a chance to drink herbal tonics and elixirs provided by Pure Organic Kitchen and Juicery, and take part in a cacao-drinking ceremony.
Godsey said that the party is based on a festival model, recognizing that people love to come together to celebrate, but still want to do so in different ways.
“The idea is that we celebrate with a choice,” he said.
The party will be family friendly in its earlier hours, he said, with childcare offered until 10 p.m. In addition, the turning of the new year will be celebrated four times throughout the evening, making it easy for families to ring in 2019 while also getting kids home and in bed a reasonable hour.
“We start by celebrating New Year’s Eve with New York, then Chicago, then Denver and finally the Pacific Northwest,” Godsey said. “There is so much confetti on the floor by the end of the night, it’s like raking up leaves in the fall. It’s a colorful and crazy experience.”
Performers at the Re(New)al New Year’s Eve party will include Ruxpin, a DJ from West Seattle; Lani Labdon, a sacred sound therapist and Reiki master; Jacqui Lown, who plays vibrational crystal bowls, Vashon performer and pilates instructor Arlette Moody, who will offer up the “sensory roller coaster”; Vixy, a burlesque performer, and Mystic O’Reilley, a Portland-based entertainer, who will help host the evening.
It’s been a busy year for Open Space, which this year welcomed the island-based theater company Civic Rep into a residency. In September, the center was also filled with a vibrant visual and performing arts event: Catch Us While You Can: Festival 25, which featured work by artists and musicians who have resided on Vashon for 25 years or longer. Open Space was also the site of classes by UMO School of Physical Arts, an annual outdoor aerial show called “Open Air” and numerous other performing arts and community events. Recently, Open Space launched a free program for island teens, including after-school drop-in times and First Friday art-making events.
More information about the evening can be found at openspacevashon.com. Advance tickets, $13 for adults and $7 for students and seniors, as well as a VIP package of $40, can be purchased at the website.
Tickets at the door are $18 adults and $10 for students and seniors. The evening is sponsored by Puget Sound Cooperative Credit Union.