Just because you don't have much cash, it doesn't mean you can't celebrate in style on New Year's Eve. We've found some reasonably priced ($40 or less) events that you can go to and still be able to pay your rent on January 1.
DANK Haus 9 p.m.; $4.99 for the first 200 people; $9.99 afterward
photo: Vera Gavrilovic
You can't really put a price on the color-coordinated, punk-polka wackiness that Chicago's The Polkaholics provide. Add in a cash bar and this night is one you'll remember - if fuzzily.
Hyatt Regency O'Hare
8 p.m.-1 a.m.; $39
Ok, so it's not necessarily in the thick of things, but you won't care once you're inside this ridiculously affordable bash, which includes entertainment by Modern Day Romeos, C-Factor, JakTripper, DJ-SPIN, Tony Ocean and the Lori Brittin Jazz Quartet. Your party ticket gets you access to five hours of open bar, a champagne toast, party favors and a fantasy casino. If you're feeling spendy, you can add on a chef-inspired dinner buffet with prime rib, lobster bisque and more for $30 (this can be done alone, as well).
11 p.m.; $40
Yeah, you've probably seen "Too Much Light Makes the Baby Go Blind" before. But you know the Neo-Futs will pull out all the stops for this special, all-ages NYE performance of the Chicago favorite. Doors open at 9:30 p.m. for non-alcoholic refreshments and hors d'oeuvres provided by Whole Foods. After the show, there'll be a toast and pizza. If the kids are old enough to stay up 'til 2010, this is your answer.
9:30 p.m.-2 a.m.; $25-$35
How much would you pay for a well-told story? At the second annual "Stories and Bubbly," you'll pay about $7 for each of the four tales told by the folks from 2nd Story. Not only that, but you'll get live music from Seeking Wonderland, a champagne toast, snacks and a dessert bar.
Small Bar (Wicker Park)
There's no cover for the New Year's party at this Wicker Park mainstay, but you'll get way more than you pay for. It's DJ Pickel's birthday, and he's celebrating with his good buddy Intel; the two will spin hip-hop, funk, soul and '80s all night.
Still holding onto your wallet? Check out more Chicago New Year's Eve events in our guide.
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