DALLAS — We knew chances were slim that the Big D NYE celebration would return to downtown Dallas, even after its organizers said in 2016 they were "hopeful" about finding a new venue for the popular year-end event. But North Texans shouldn't hold their breath.
Big D NYE is on indefinite hiatus, according to Jim Glass, director of marketing and digital media at WFAA Media, the event's production company.
"We are not actively pursuing a return of the event at this time," Glass said by email, citing logistical, technical and security issues associated with the event. The last Big D NYE took place in 2014.
Perhaps it's perfect timing, then, that a new local event is taking shape.
Lone Star NYE: Countdown to 2018 is a new hourlong television special that will be broadcast from Dallas with coverage of the AT&T Streaming Lights at Reunion Tower fireworks display. The special, which starts Dec. 31 at 11:30 p.m., will be broadcast locally on KXAS-TV (NBC5), as well as 18 other stations in Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, Kansas and Missouri.
That gives people throughout North Texas a chance to view the fireworks from the comfort of their living rooms. But if you'd rather have boots — err, heels? — on the ground, Saint Rocco's restaurant in Dallas' Trinity Groves is hosting a party where most of the telecast will take place. The party kicks off with cocktails and dinner at 8 p.m., before guests head to the rooftop bar for a performance from Dallas band Jackopierce. NBC5 news anchors Kristen Dickerson and Kris Gutierrez will host the party alongside former NFL player and Little Rock news anchor D.J. Williams, according to KXAN.
Tickets to the event cost $250 per person and go on sale Dec. 2 via SaintRoccos.com. Only 160 will be sold, a spokeswoman said. So not exactly a replacement for Big D NYE, but maybe a step in the right direction?
This is the second year that AT&T Streaming Lights at Reunion Tower will light up the last moments of the year with an 8-minute show featuring 4,000 pyrotechnic special effects. While organizers are not encouraging people to camp out in Reunion Park, they are partnering with several local venues, including the Old Red Museum and Fashion Industry Gallery, for watch parties. If you're looking for a place to enjoy the spectacle for free, bundle up and take a walk on the Ronald Kirk Pedestrian Bridge (formerly the Continental Avenue Pedestrian Bridge) near Trinity Groves.
FEATURED IMAGE: Fireworks fly from Reunion Tower during the New Year's Eve event in Dallas on Dec. 31, 2016. (Nathan Hunsinger/The Dallas Morning News).