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Mantecans getting ready to party to usher in 2013

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Mantecans getting ready to party to usher in 2013

Suzanne Forsberg puts the finishing touches on sangria for one of her Rooster Juice customers. The bar and grill will be hosting a New Years Eve party complete with an all-you-can-eat buffet, live ...

JASON CAMPBELL/The Bulletin


POSTED December 29, 2012 3:11 a.m.

Travis McGowan is going big for New Years Eve.

It’s the first chance that the 21-year-old will be able to hit the bars and clubs that his friends have been frequenting for some time. He plans on making the most out of his evening – hanging out with friends in Sacramento before heading downtown in the Capital City to Harlow’s on J Street.

He doesn’t quite know what to expect other than the good time that he constantly hears about for the first two weeks in January.

“I’m younger than most of my friends so I always had to stay home when they would go out,” he said. “Not this year. I’m legal now, and I’m going to make the most out of this experience.

“I just hope it lives up to my expectations.”

Not everybody, however, has McGowan’s youthful zeal when it comes to ushering in 2013.

Benjaimin Hargan said that he’s burnt out on the crowded clubs and overpriced drinks then spending the entire next day recuperating on the couch unable to enjoy the day off from work like his friends that gave up the wild night out years ago.

Not having to find a babysitter and getting to spend more quality time with his wife, he said, is a much better trade-off.

“There was a time when I planned for New Years for weeks – it’s the one night that everybody in the world goes out and celebrates together,” he said. “It just isn’t for me anymore. On the couch in front of the television and able to function the next day is so much better.”

But if you’re planning on doing something, save for a house party or a visit with friends, you’re likely going to have to head out of town.

While at one time most of Manteca’s night spots held special New Years Eve events complete with dinners and drink specials and all but guaranteed a swinging good time for everybody, only a few will be doing so this year.

Chez Shari – known for some of its extravagant functions and gatherings – will be closed for a private party, and Rookie’s Sports Bar at Manteca Bowl will just be open like any normal night.

Only Rooster Juice – which is offering an all-you-can-eat buffet and party package that comes with favors, karaoke, live music, complimentary champagne at midnight and a taxi pairing service – and the recently opened Ernie’s Food and Spirits will be having special events.

Isadore’s will offer dinner from a limited menu and will host a band playing in the bar.

“I’m not sure what I’m going to do yet,” Jennifer Huntsman said. “I’ve been talking with friends and we want to stay local – last year we went to San Francisco and the trip back just took too long.

“It’s a night for fun but I think that I’ve learned from some of the mistakes of the past. Best to just keep it close to home.”

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