New Year's Eve celebrations start early in Louisville - wave3.com-Louisville News, Weather & Sports

New Year's Eve celebrations start early in Louisville

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The Ancient Order of Hibernians hosted a celebration at Flanagan's Pub at 7 p.m. Tuesday. The Ancient Order of Hibernians hosted a celebration at Flanagan's Pub at 7 p.m. Tuesday.
Mark Wakefield Mark Wakefield
The Seelbach's event was a package deal, complete with dinner, drinks, entertainment and an overnight stay. The Seelbach's event was a package deal, complete with dinner, drinks, entertainment and an overnight stay.
Kim Thome Kim Thome
People celebrating the new year at Fourth Street Live! People celebrating the new year at Fourth Street Live!

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - New Year's Eve celebrations in Louisville started hours before the ball dropped in Times Square, as some people expected to get home early and others planned ahead for safety.

The Ancient Order of Hibernians, the Irish-Catholic organization that puts on the St. Patrick's Day parade in the Highlands, hosted a celebration at Flanagan's Pub at 7 p.m. Tuesday.

"We thought it would be a good idea to have the ball drop when it's midnight in Dublin," said Mark Wakefield, the group's president. "They're all having a good time because this is our first fundraiser for (next year's parade)."

Other celebrations in downtown Louisville started soon afterward, including live performances at Fourth Street Live and a dinner party at the Seelbach Hilton hotel.

The Seelbach's event was a package deal, complete with dinner, drinks, entertainment and an overnight stay.

It was a safe option and meant partygoers didn't have to find a taxi ride home, said Kim and Vince Thome, who attended the event.

"We celebrate New Year's Eve - it's a new beginning, it's a new adventure," Kim Thome said. "We looked in the paper and online to see what was going on around town, and this seemed like the perfect spot."

Fourth Street Live's celebration included dropping hundreds of balloons from the roof.

Kentucky State Police had a presence near the corner of Fourth and Liberty streets, reminding revelers to find a safe ride home.