1. Parenting
You can opt-out at any time. Please refer to our privacy policy for contact information.

Celebrate New Year's Eve with Kids

Follow these ideas for a family-friendly New Year's Party


Bingo, New Year's Eve, parties, kids, children, games, activities, fun, play

Host a game night for kids on New Year's Eve, playing old favorites like Bingo.

Photo courtesy of Quaint Handmade

Traditionally, New Year’s Eve is considered a holiday for grownups. True, midnight is past most kids’ bedtimes, but there are still fun ways to usher in the new year with children.

Here are some tips:

  • Hold a mock New Year’s Eve for young children, celebrating at 7 or 8 p.m. instead of midnight.
  • Make a ball-shaped piñata that resembles the big ball that drops in New York City. At midnight, let the kids bang it open.
  • Ask guests to bring as many alarm clocks as they can and set them all to go off at midnight (or earlier, if you’re celebrating a mock New Year). When the alarms start ringing, bang pots and pans, toot horns and make a general ruckus as you hug, kiss and wish everyone a happy year.
  • Take a cue from political candidates and do a balloon drop. Suspend a bunch of balloons above the partygoers, then release them at midnight. Or, fill balloons with confetti before you blow them up, then have the kids pop them at 12.
  • Toast each other with sparkling cider or some other bubbly mocktail.
  • Have the kids spend time scrapbooking their memories from the previous year or making time capsules that will be remain sealed until the children turn 18--or at least until the next New Year's Eve.
  • Let siblings have a slumber party with one another in the living room. Pitch a tent if you have enough space.
  • Get fancy! Play dress up with young children. Bring out the bowties, high heels, lipstick and pearls.
  • Host a board game marathon.
  • Craft the night away.
  • Throw a Bingo party.
  • Host a hat-themed party, where everyone must wear to goofy-looking hat to get in the door.
  • Many cities have community-wide “First Night” activities, which are family-friendly, alcohol-free events that usually involve live music, art, crafts and other entertainment and activities. Find out if there’s one near your home.

Or, get a babysitter on Dec. 31 instead, then celebrate the new year with the kids on January 1. Make it an annual tradition to host a special breakfast, lunch or brunch with family or friends. At some point, write down resolutions (or goals) and share them aloud with one another.

  1. About.com
  2. Parenting
  3. Kids' Parties & Celebrations
  4. Celebrating Holidays
  5. New Year's Eve
  6. Celebrate New Year's Eve with Kids

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.