PHOTOS: Here’s How Casper Rang in the New Year on Saturday
New Year's Eve was a very busy night in Casper. There were parties, and concerts, and dances, oh my! Several different venues offered up a night of various forms of entertainment and we were there to capture many of them.
Saturday night produced memories for countless people, as they rang in 2023 with friends and family, laughter and lovers. They were singing together. They were slow dancing in the dark. They were kissing. There were so many sights to be seen and songs to be sung and resolutions to be promised.
Everywhere in Casper, seemingly, celebrated in one way or another. There was so much joy permeating through the halls of places like The Lyric, and the Gaslight Social, and The Office Bar & Grill, and the Ramkota Hotel. People were celebrating in style.
At The Lyric, for instance, Opera Wyoming put on a spectacle that would rival anything Dick Clark could produce.
"For the past couple of years, we wanted to create an event for those who would like an intimate alternative to the NYE scene while keeping things entertaining," said Daniel Quintana, Director of Opera Wyoming. "It’s also an opportunity to showcase and celebrate the talent we’ve had through the year. In 2019, we did Strauss’ 'Die Fledermaus' with the NYE party immediately following. After 2020, we decided to put our own spin on things, so instead of doing the post-show party (which was ANOTHER show itself), we have the party be the NYE event. We came up with an evening of opera, musical theater, pop songs, dancing, magic. It’s everyone’s unique talents and collaborations on display for a one night only variety show."
And what talent there was. Performers such as James Stress, Gabe Cisneros, Faith Lockwood, E'Lanae Medord and all of the guys and gals with the Keyhole Burlesque crew put on a show for the ages. There was song, there was dance, there was everything in between.
"The talent onstage tonight performed for the love of their craft and we hoped it showed," Quintana said. "We didn’t even need to ask most of them to participate, they simply volunteered and we are so grateful for them."
They did it, simply, because they love to perform. And what better night to do so than on New Year's Eve?
"Mingling with familiar faces and meeting new ones who also share a passion for performing [was my favorite part of the evening]" Quintana said. And the same can be said by most everybody else who was there. The Lyric was packed with audience members and every single one of them had a smile on their face.
Also smiling were the guests of the New Year's Eve Masquerade Ball held at the Best Western Ramkota Hotel. Several quests were dressed to the nines, hiding their faces behind a myriad of masks. But those masks couldn't hide the joy on their faces.
"I have a small event planning business and I've always wanted to do a masquerade dance," said Wendy Haverlock, owner and operator of Creative Touches Event Planning. "It's been a rough couple of years for everybody, and I just thought bringing in 2023 with something like this would be a lot of fun."
Indeed, it was. And lately, as Haverlock alluded to, fun has been hard to come by. Times have been hard. People have struggled. Joy has been missing. Whether it was due to a global pandemic (that started four years ago, can you believe it?) or emotions running high because of differing beliefs; it's been hard for people to just allow themselves to feel joy. To have fun. To smile. To take a minute to dance in the rain (or, like, snow in this case).
What Haverlock, Quintana, and everybody else wanted to do this New Year's Eve, was give Casper a chance to let loose a little bit. They wanted to give Casper a chance to have fun, to kick back, and to make a few memories. That's what this town did. And we have the pictures to prove it.
Photos from New Year's Eve 2022 in Casper can be seen below: