'Tis the season to freak out. You've finally finished your holiday present shopping, but now you have to throw together that last-minute New Year's Eve bash you promised everyone. Before you burn out your festive mental lamp, turn to the Web for help. You can find sites that will help you pick a theme, sites where you can buy decorations and favours, and sites that can save you the trouble of tracking down RSVPs.

There's bound to be a letdown after last year's millennial gala events, but you can still spike your proverbial party punch with a great theme.

ThePlunge.com has suggestions ranging from a masquerade ball to a "Bare All Polar Bear Plunge" party (the latter requires very cold water and thick skin). In addition to ideas, the site gives you setting, food and dress code tips for each theme, and appropriate movie and music to accompany the evening.

At Party411, you can get ideas on how to put together that 2001: A Space Odyssey theme party you've waited 32 years to throw. The site gives you invitation and decoration suggestions, focusing heavily on stars and "Thus Spoke Zarathustra" playing in the background. If you're not a big HAL fan, and none of the other theme suggestions grab you, you can email Party411's Party Girl for personalized ideas.

Email invites Now that all the hard work is done, it's time to send out invites to those who've been naughty and nice. At sites such as Evite and InviteDepot (you can email all your friends and get them to RSVP online to keep an accurate attendance count. You can pick from a few designs for the invite, and you can add a link to a map of your area. There's also a note area for extra details.

All that remains is getting the food, the champagne, the music… Just remember: It's the jolliest time of the year. And once it's over, you can start working on that Easter party.

Happy New Year from us all at Macworld. See you in 2001!