Tvpartywd30Call us crazy, but it seems that every year around this time we start a new year. And, every year we tend to count down with America’s most affable host — Dick Clark. And while a stroke a few years back may have slowed the Clarkster down a little — and forced us to allow Ryan Seacrest into our home even more than usual — there’s still only one party worth participating in this year: Dick Clark’s Primetime New Year’s Rockin’ Eve 2008, Monday night on ABC. So make a resolution and get some mixed nuts; we’re partying like it’s 2008.

Setting the scene:
There’s something wonderfully campy about this show, especially when they cut to the partying going on in California that appears to have been filmed in mid-June in someone’s dressing room. So take that theme and run with it: balloons, glitter and glitz. Lighting is always key, so use dimmers and work some candle magic for ambience. Load up on the hats, noisemakers and confetti. Since time is ironically not on our side here, invitations should be of the e-mail variety. Make sure you have a banner welcoming 2008 and pay someone (perhaps a foreign exchange student whom you can convince this is a big honor) to walk around as the Baby New Year in a diaper and sash. And don’t forget to take everyone’s car keys — it’s the only way to make sure they see 2008. And if you have rich friends, maybe you could steal a new BMW.

If you don’t ring in the New Year in evening wear — tuxedos and ball gowns — your resolutions don’t stand a chance.

On the menu:
Since the resolutions to eat right start the next morning, be gluttonous tonight. Offer a buffet of appetizers sure to clog arteries and influence cellulite: chicken wings, mozzarella sticks, potato skins, sausage stuffed mushrooms, etc. Don’t forget a chocolate fountain and a case (or two) of champagne.

On the hi-fi:
Dick Clark knows what he’s doing, so choose the artists performing on the show: Fergie, OneRepublic,, Taylor Swift, Plain White T’s, Natasha Bedingfield, Akon and Sean Kingston.

The showstopper:
If you’ve got to be a little closer to the action — and that means New York, New York, where Clark will ring in the New Year — grab tickets to one of the hottest parties in town. Try the ultrachic Hotel Gansevoort’s exclusive soiree and splurge for the VIP rooftop tables.

Posted by:Michael Korb