LOS ANGELES – Why not share a shot with Paris Hilton or dance with Fall Out Boy's Pete Wentz to ring in 2009? This year, anyone with the money could party like — and with — a rock star, movie star or reality TV star on New Year's Eve.
Here's a look at some of the parties that were boasting famous names:
— Paris Hilton was hosting the Bongo Virus party at the Trademark nightclub in Sydney, Australia. Tickets were $129.
— New York City's biggest party was arguably the annual ball drop in Times Square. This year's celebration was to feature performances by Lionel Richie, Taylor Swift and the Jonas Brothers, along with appearances by Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton and former President Bill Clinton. Admission was free. Meanwhile, Mario Lopez was to host a party at the Marquee nightclub (tickets: $165) and actress Emmanuelle Chriqui and blogger Perez Hilton were to host a party at Hotel Gansevoort (admission: $200).
— Lindsay Lohan was to helm the festivities as gal pal Samantha Ronson spun the tunes at Mansion nightclub in Miami. Admission was $200. Also in Miami: John Legend was to appear at Prive (tickets: $200); T.I. was to perform and Chloe Sevigny was to host at Gansevoort South (admission started at $225); Diddy, Molly Sims, Adam Levine and James Valentine of Maroon 5 were to appear at separate parties at Fontainebleau (admission: $400 for each event); and Busta Rhymes was to perform at the Shore Club (tickets started at $275).
— How much was it to party with a star in Las Vegas? That depends on your definition of a star. You could celebrate the New Year with new parents, musicians Ashlee Simpson-Wentz and Pete Wentz, at Pure nightclub for $200; share a toast with reality star Kim Kardashian and her sisters at LAX for $150; or raise a glass with Heidi Montag and Spencer Pratt at the Christian Audigier nightclub for $125. Also in Vegas: Usher was to appear at the Bank nightclub inside the Bellagio (tickets: $200), and Denise Richards and Lance Bass were to host as Run DMC provided the beats at Prive nightclub inside Planet Hollywood hotel (admission: $200).
— Just months after surviving a fiery plane crash, Travis Barker and DJ AM (Adam Goldstein) were set to usher in the New Year at the Wilshire Theater in Los Angeles. Tickets were $90. Their performance was to be broadcast live online and at nine nightclubs around the country as part of the New Year's Nation multicity celebration. Also in Los Angeles: Eva Longoria was to host a soiree at her restaurant, Beso; Robin Thicke was to perform at Area (admission: $150); Katy Perry was to perform at Paramount Studios (tickets started at $100); Xzibit was to perform at Apple Lounge (tickets started at $150); Moby, Paul Oakenfold and other DJs were to spin under circus-style tents downtown at Giant Maximus (tickets started at $70).