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For New Year's Eve, boomers can go big or quiet

Panama Hatties in Huntington Station

Panama Hatties in Huntington Station Credit: Newsday File, 2008 / Ana P. Gutierrez

Members of the 50-and-older set may not share the same view of what makes the optimal New Year's Eve. Some boomers go for a big gala event; others prefer a quiet dinner party with a midnight Champagne toast. We give you both options:

Stresa1524 Northern Blvd., Manhasset, 516-365-6956,

THE SCENE An aura of conviviality prevails at this tasteful Italian classic.

THE CELEBRATION A low-key event with a four-course dinner (main course options include lobster and veal chop) that comes with wine. Midnight Champagne toast with hats and noisemakers.

WHEN 8 p.m. to midnight

THE PRICE $95 a person.

>>Click for restaurants with a party scene

 Garden City Hotel, 45 Seventh St., Garden City, 516-747-2000,

THE SCENE Big-time gala fills the Grand Ballroom of this elegant hotel.

THE CELEBRATION Following cocktails and hors d'oeuvres will be a three-course dinner. Open bar, live music and dancing and a countdown to midnight with hats and noisemakers. Overnight packages are available.

WHEN Ballroom opens at 9:30 p.m.

THE PRICE $195 per person, all-inclusive, with reservations and payment in advance.

 Lombardi's on the Sound, 44 Fairway Dr., Port Jefferson, 631-473-1440,

THE SCENE This spacious country club overlooks Long Island Sound.

THE CELEBRATION A candlelight ball with high-end buffet dinner (items such as shrimp cocktail and filet mignon) and five-hour "top shelf" open bar. DJ and percussionist provide dance music. Live simulcast of Times Square ball drop at midnight.

WHEN 8 p.m. to 1 a.m.

THE PRICE $125 all-inclusive, per person.

 Panama Hatties, 872 Jericho Tpke., Huntington Station, 631-351-1727,

THE SCENE This serious wining-and-dining destination draws an Epicurean set.

THE CELEBRATION A quiet four-course dinner (one option will be elk chop) that includes a Champagne toast at midnight. The restaurant will stage its own balloon drop while everyone watches Dick Clark in Times Square.

WHEN After 8:30 p.m.

THE PRICE $75 a person (beverages other than the Champagne toast are additional, as are tax and tips).

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