Ottawa prepares to ring in 2013
Fireworks explode in the sky above Sydney Harbour during the pre-New Year's Eve celebrations in Sydney, Australia on Monday, Dec. 31, 2012. (AP Photo/Rob Griffith)
Published Monday, December 31, 2012 9:46PM EST
Many residents ringing in 2013 in the Capital said they were happy to see that there were so many events to choose from as they said farewell to another year.
“This is exciting there’s finally something that’s come out that we can do and not just watch it on TV and say cheers at home while watching Toronto, Niagara Falls or New York doing it, this is just great,” said Audrey Tupper.
Sparks Street played host to what promised to be “a Times Square experience” complete with a lit-up cube dropping as the clock struck midnight.
“We just thought we’d come out and see the first year Sparks Street was having their celebration out here, we wanted to come out and do something different,” said Catharine Clarke.
“We wanted to come out and see some of the shows. The Arkells are playing so we’re excited for that,” said Brett Mahy.
Some people decided to celebrate the New Year, Scottish style, with Hogmanay at city hall.
“I think it’s wonderful, I think it’s great to have something for families that’s early, we can get out and do something and still be home in time for bed,” said Chris Milne.
“We usually have a quiet night at home but this year we decided with all the new festivities happening in Ottawa we’d give it a shot,” said Tupper.
The event featured a performance by Cape Breton’s Barra MacNeils, skating on the Rink of Dreams, Beavertails, ice sculptures and face painting.
At Ben Franklin Place in Nepean, Ottawa Councillor Rick Chiarelli hosted his 20th annual alcohol-free bash.
“We just decided to do something as a family,” said Cindy Gattas who attended the event for the first time. “That’s the whole lessons of New Year’s Eve is just getting together and hanging out and having fun and just doing something we could all do.”
This event featured a talent show, harpist, a children’s colouring room and skating.
“It has a bunch of activities and there might me some friends and it’s lots of fun,” said a child named Grace.
Proceeds from food purchases go towards the organization Ontario Students Against Impaired Driving and MADD Ottawa.
Last year more than 6,000 people attended the free
Many said they enjoy the family-friendly feel.
“I think there’s a sense of togetherness, everybody’s just having a good time,” said Jean-Charles Grégoire. “It’s a nice event, it’s convenient, and it’s just around here. There’s hot chocolate, hot dogs and things like that.”
Many out celebrating Monday night said they had a lot to look forward to in 2013.
“Another year to travel with my new wife, enjoy the year,” said Mahy.
“Just time with my family, fresh start, new year,” said Clarke.
Other events happening around Ottawa included Dancing in the Stars at the Ottawa Convention Centre and a Miami-themed party held at the Westin Hotel.
With files from CTV Ottawa’s Katie Griffin