Space Needle's Private Party

Seattle landmark rented out for New Year by Oregon family

Seatt le’s best-known landmark is home to a private party this New Year’s Eve. The Space Needle is the focus of the city’s biggest firework show and 60,000 people are expected to gather at the base of the needle to watch. However, those folks won’t be allowed inside. On this historic New Year the needle won’t be the place to party-- unless you have a private invitation.

A group of family and friends from Oregon scored a coup by renting the Space Needle for their own private New Year’s Eve bash. The out-of-town group rented Seattle’s landmark several years ago, before all th e millennium hype. It took two years to convince the Needle’s private operators to rent out the structure, but in the end they managed to do it.

"I'm just amazed that somebody in Seattle didn't think of it ahead of me,’’ Wendy Warren, 50, of Portland, Oregon told the Associated Press.

The idea for the party blossomed nearly a decade ago while Ms. Warren was celebrating New Year's on the Oregon coast with friends. They all paused to consider where they wanted to be as 2000 began.

``About three people said simultaneously: 'Space Needle!''' said Warren, whose interest in the landmark dates to the 1962 World's Fair, which had a 21st century theme.

Warren has invited 700 people to the Seattle party, including some guests who are flying in from Europe and Africa. The party will be able to wander the needle from the lower level to the revolving restaurant on top of the 605-foot structure. There will be music and buffet.

Seattle’s Space Needle firework’s show will still be open to the public but it’s hard to say how many people will actually show up. Last week a suspected terrorist was arrested in Washington State with bomb-making devices and Seattle is on the FBI’s list of three cities targeted for possible terrorist activity.

The private party will go on inside the needle, and the public will be gathering outside. It pays to think ahead, and this group scored a major coup by landing the Space Needle for their New Year’s Eve event keeping everyone else out in the cold.

Source: Associated Press

DATE: 12/24/99

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