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New Years

My midnight: How the Weekly spent the last few moments of 2009

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A: Xania Woodman with DJ Vice at Vanity B: Laura Davis and a random cross-dressing stranger on Fremont Street C: C. Moon Reed at The Joint D: Rick Lax on The Strip E: Jack Colton at Cathouse F: DJ Jordan Stevens and Deanna Rilling at Rain G: Allison Duck’s boyfriend, Peter, and Allison at Lavo H: A midnight kiss at Krave

A

Midnight according to which cell carrier? According to my date’s phone it was already 2010 when DJ Vice was giving us the 30-second heads-up. According to mine it was still only 11:58 when all of Vanity was screaming “Happy New Year!” and praying silently to be dealt a better hand in the next decade. And it was another awkward two minutes’ wait before the first pastel sparks of fireworks lit up the Vegas skyline at true midnight. Reality seemed worlds away from the Vanity patio just then. Three midnights? Three chances to send 2009 back to where it came from. –Xania Woodman, Vanity Nightclub

B

My midnight was a happy meal, me being the meat in the middle of the patty that was the suffocating crowd at Fremont Street Experience. Right before 2010, the smell of salty french fries belonging to the person behind me attacked my nostrils. My soft drink was an empty beer cup crunching beneath my feet. And the “happy” was a nearby stranger who randomly embraced me for a photo op. My free treat was the midnight kiss, but not from the random stranger. –Laura Davis, Fremont Street

C

John Mayer and Bob Saget counted me into 2010. I cheered the New Year with the last of a rum and Coke, because general admission doesn’t get free champagne. I didn’t kiss anybody, because I was working. But when the balloons came down and Mayer launched into a cover of Talking Heads’ “Once in a Lifetime,” I stopped pouting, and, for the first time this year (yes, all 30 seconds of it thus far), looked on the bright side and enjoyed myself. –C. Moon Reed, John Mayer concert at the Joint

D

From 11:30 to 12:10 I stood between Treasure Island and the Venetian. The fireworks were good, but the people-watching was better. My mom kept asking me why all the girls were walking around in such short dresses and tall shoes. “By Las Vegas standards,” I told her, “those heels aren’t that high, and those dresses aren’t that short.” My mom and dad greeted the new year with a hug and a kiss. The evangelists on the Flamingo corner greeted the new year by telling me I was going to hell. –Rick Lax, the Strip

E

My last few moments of 2009 were inconveniently also the last few minutes of the open bar that ended at midnight. And doing what any reasonable person would, the unapologetically frugal side of me put the new decade’s celebration on hold as I fought my way to the bar for more free vodka sodas. Maybe I’ll be less cheap in 2020 ... –Jack Colton, CatHouse

F

As the worst decade ever drew to a close, I stood onstage at Rain near DJ Paul Oakenfold. He wore a vest over a T-shirt—as he often does—but this time he honored the late DJ AM with his attire. There, in the midst of the revelry, was a reflection of respect for those lost in 2009. I resolved to cherish every moment with the few close friends left in my life, even though I have difficulty expressing how much they mean to me. –Deanna Rilling, Rain

G

For the second year in a row I watched fireworks over the Strip at midnight on NYE while enjoying a champagne toast with my boyfriend as we looked forward to the best year ever. 2009 definitely was not that, but I have high hopes for this year after a romantic midnight kiss and a hug that took the chill off as we watched thousands of dollars explode in front of our eyes from the patio of Lavo. –Allison Duck, Lavo

H

All around me, lips locked, balloons and confetti dropped and free champagne bubbled down throats. My eye was pressed to a camera, taking photos of other people smooching. At midnight I was a straight girl working at gay nightclub Krave. No kiss for me. In my pocket, my phone vibrated. It’s my boyfriend. He’s working, too. The message reads: “Happy New Year, babe! :-*” Good enough. –April Corbin, Krave Nightclub

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