Ring in 2016 in The Clem

Celebration events feature fun for kids and adults

By: Julie Snyder | Mount Clemens - Clinton - Harrison Journal | Published December 23, 2015


MOUNT CLEMENS — There will be no shortage of things to see and do in downtown Mount Clemens on New Year’s Eve.

The 22nd annual Macomb County New Year’s Eve Gala will kick off at 4 p.m. with a Children’s New Year’s Eve in Never Never Land event hosted by Peter Pan, Captain Hook, Tinker Bell and the Fairy Godmother.

Dave Schneider, owner of ABC Magic and one of the organizers of the celebration, said Pirates Cove will feature face painting, pony rides, a petting zoo, Thomas the Train rides, karaoke with Captain Hook and Peter Pan, a meet-and-greet with Elsa, Anna and Olaf from “Frozen,” magic shows inside the Masonic Temple above the magic shop, and a cakewalk fundraiser for the Mount Clemens Optimist Club.

“Eighty percent of the events are indoors, so you don’t have to be outside if it’s cold,” said Schneider, who has organized the children’s event for the past five years.

And while most of the events are free, a few have small costs — such as the pony rides, which are $2, and tickets to the magic show are $5 and can also be purchased in advance.

“It’s affordable for the whole family,” said Schneider. He said attendance has grown tremendously over the years, with thousands coming out to enjoy the festivities in 2014.

The children’s events continue until 9 p.m. with a mini ball drop and a mini fireworks display.

Live entertainment with Eastside Westside at 9:30 p.m. officially kicks off the gala party, which organizers say is perfect for both adults and children.

Michelle Weiss, marketing and events coordinator for the Mount Clemens Downtown Development Authority, said she’s always delighted with the turnout every year.

“I’m amazed so many people come out even when the weather is bad,” she said. “I get so many accolades from people who are happy that it’s still going on. Families come early with their children and stay until midnight.”

The biggest part of the night, aside from the countdown and the popular fireworks show at midnight, is the 50/50 raffle. Over the years, the DDA, which is co-hosting the event along with ABC Magic, has given away thousands of dollars to one lucky winner. Weiss said they once awarded $15,780 to one winner, $7,000 was won another previous year, and $4,000 was won last year. Tickets are sold in advance at participating Mount Clemens shops and restaurants, and will be sold until around 11:30 p.m. the day of the gala.

The drawing will take place at 11:50 p.m., just prior to the fireworks show, which is being put on by Zambelli Fireworks.

For more information, go to www.downtownmountclemens.com.