10 Kid-Friendly New Year’s Eve Ideas: At Home and Around Town

(Photo courtesy of www.sesameplace.com/philadelphia)

Gone are the days where we used to try and find the best all you can drink deal at a bar or restaurant for New Year’s Eve. You remember the routine, powdering your pale December face with loads of bronzer, putting on that new sequin black top that you picked up from Express, and trying to plan how you were going to get home.  (These were the days before Uber… how will we we ever find a cab home on NYE?!)

New Year’s is a bit different when you have a three year old and two one year olds.  We started doing some ‘Googling’ on ideas for NYE to do at home (and around the Philly area), and here’s what we found.

We thought we’d stage a “midnight’ experience for our three year old around 6 or 7PM so he can get to bed. You Tube has LOTS of mock countdowns, here is a 2018 Kids New Year’s Eve countdown that we liked.  Another must have for NYE is Auld Lang Syne.  Here are two of our favorite versions, one from It’s a Wonderful Life and the other from Sex And The City. (Don’t judge this version until you listen to it!  It’s good.) .

Here are some other ideas on how to make a kiddie NYE at home a little special:

  1. Make a Hot Chocolate Bar– You can get really fancy and make make hot chocolate with melted chocolate, vanilla extract, whole milk and half and half, but we’re old school and just heat up whatever milk we have and good ol’ Hershey’s Chocolate Syrup.  The “bar” part of this is what kids love.  Have bowls of mini marshmallows, rainbow sprinkles, candy canes, whipped cream, grated chocolate, a few M&M’s, etc. and the kiddos can customize their cup of cocoa.
  2. Get Dressed Up– Our three year old was in a wedding last year and has a little tuxedo.  He’ll never wear it again, and it could be fun to get all dolled up even if we are just hanging at home.
  3. Buy Noise-Makers and Hats (We just grabbed some from the grocery store!) and Bang Pots and Pans Outside– This is mandatory.
  4. Fireworks– Dig those leftover sparklers and fireworks your husband brought for July 4th out of the garage!
  5. Do Something Sentimental- like a quick kiddie questionnaire.  We did this last year and stash the answers in our little guy’s Christmas stocking. (That way we know where it is each year for NYE.) Here are a few sample questions: (It’d be cute to do this every year!)
    • What’s your favorite TV show?
    • What’s your favorite food?
    • Who is your best buddy?
    • What’s your favorite thing to play?
    • What’s your favorite word?
    • What’s your favorite place to go (i.e. zoo, playground, etc)?
      • I plan on calling him every year for the rest of my life and getting his answers to this questions, even when he’s 40 years old. (Sorry, buddy.)

It’s your plan is to venture out, there’s quite a few events happening during the day on December 31st.

  1. “Countdown to Noon” Events:
  2. New Year’s Eve Splash at Adventure Aquarium in Camden has extended hours until 6PM and a DJ dance party and views to the fireworks display. 
  3. Zoo Year’s Eve at the Elmwood Park Zoo
  4. New Year’s Eve Family Bash at North Bowl-“This family-friendly celebration rings in 2018 from 5pm-8pm on Sunday, December 31st. In addition to bowling, games, facepainter, balloon artist, a feast and more, we are thrilled to announce that this year’s event will include live music by Emmy-nominated Alex and the Kaleidoscope.There will be a mock Ball Drop for all of the kids who won’t be staying up until midnight! Tickets are $20 per person; purchase yours today at https://nbnyebash2017.splashthat.com. Bring your whole family and join in the holiday fun!”
  5. Blue Cross River Rink– They do two fireworks displays, one at 6PM and one at midnight.  Ice skating and the earlier fireworks show would be ideal for the ‘not so little’ kiddos.
  6. New Year’s Eve at Sesame Place– “Rock out with Elmo, Abby Cadabby, Cookie Monster and Count von Count, as their music fills the air and the sky is covered with colorful bursts of brilliance. Be sure to watch us paint the sky red (and green and blue) from inside the park. This impressive display will certainly give you something to celebrate this New Year! Fireworks will begin immediately following the 6:00PM evening performance of the Neighborhood Street Party Christmas Parade.”

Happy 2018! What’s your plan for New Year’s Eve with the family this year?


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