NEW Year's Eve celebrations are going ahead across the Hunter on Friday night as revellers look to farewell a COVID-disrupted 2021.
Newcastle Foreshore will host a range of roving entertainers, food trucks and more from four o'clock, capped off by the annual fireworks display at 9pm.
"City of Newcastle's (CN) New Year's Eve celebration and 9pm fireworks will allow those wishing to celebrate the end of 2021 the ability to do so safely in an outdoor environment," a City of Newcastle spokesperson said.
"CN is not delivering a main-stage event in 2021, which means there will be no single focal point allowing small groups to sit together across the Foreshore area."
Encouraging social distancing, council said the event will be covered by a COVID-safe plan.
Lake Macquarie will see a fireworks display at 9pm from the "eastern extremity of Wangi Bay". Traditionally organised and promoted by the Wangi RSL, this year's display is thanks to the newly formed Wangi Community Fireworks Inc.
"The waterfront reserve from the Workers Club around to the RSL is the best vantage point but it can also be seen from Fishing Point," Wangi Community Fireworks Inc. treasurer Bob Porter said.
"We're still on track and everything is organised so the only thing that will stop us now is the weather.
"We have around $25,000 set aside for the event which has come from council and local businesses. The fireworks alone cost us $20,000."
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In the Hunter, there will be fireworks at 9pm at the Hunter Valley Gardens and Maitland Levee, with Harrigan's at Pokolbin hosting a New Year's event capped off with a midnight fireworks display.
Maitland Levee will feature entertainment and amusements spread out in the Riverside car park and back along the riverbank. Maitland council encouraged everyone to social distance and, where they can't, encouraged the use of masks.
Shane Cook, from The Fireworks Factory which is supplying pyrotechnics for the Maitland and Newcastle displays again this year, said these events were important coming out of a year so impacted by COVID.
"We've had people booked in pretty much as soon as lockdowns started lifting," Mr Cook said.
"I think it's important for people to get out and enjoy themselves and really just get back to being a community. In a COVID safe way of course."
D'Albora Marina in Nelson Bay will be a "hub for activity" with entertainment starting at 11:30am.
"Live music, roving entertainers, installation artists, and outdoor games, all leading up to the incredible fireworks display at 9pm," the event's social media reads.
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