family fun

5 New Year’s Eve Activities

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Everyone loves New Year’s Eve! You know what they say... out with the old, and in with the new. Families like to celebrate this holiday by throwing a party for their family and friends. Coming up with activities that everyone can enjoy together is a difficult task. We wanted to take the work out of planning your get together. Here are 5 family friendly New Year's Eve activities that you can use to help ring in the start of a new year and create memories that will last a lifetime. 

New Year's Eve

5 New Year’s Eve Activities For Families 

Progressive Dinner—Whether you have a huge kitchen or just a little nook, this is the activity that suits everyone. All you need is three or four families that are within walking or driving distance from each other. Family 1 starts the evening off at 6 pm with appetizers consisting of cheese and crackers, and small bites that can just be eaten by hand with a napkin. Move onto the family with the largest home and a formal dining room with room to sit for the main meal. Finish the evening off at a third home for dessert and backyard space so the kids can do sparklers. This works for families of two or ten!

Bucket of Surprises—Each New Year’s Eve when I was growing up my mom would do this for our family and anyone that came over for the night to celebrate with us. She would get an empty bucket from the local home improvement store and fill it with six wrapped boxes of surprises. Starting at 5:45 pm the kids would get to reach in and pick a box to open. Each box contained enough “prizes” for all of the people at the party. She would wrap things like noise makers, party hats and necklaces, treats, and sparklers. We would open the last one at 11:45 just in time to hand out the last prize before it was midnight. It was always a blast for not only the kids, but the adults too.

Movie Marathon with Popcorn Bar—This past year I found myself leaving the New Year’s Eve activities until the last minute. I had also invited over a few neighborhood families for the evening to celebrate with us. I needed a quick and easy night that could be enjoyed by all. I decided to do a movie marathon. I sent an email to the families to have them vote and a certain “Middle Earth” trilogy was unanimously chosen. We timed the start of the final movie so that it would end at midnight. For treats I did a ton of air popped popcorn and bagged it beforehand. I then set out bowls of chocolate chips, coconut, marshmallows, and candy of all kinds to be mixed-in.

Make a Time Capsule—This idea is great for a family who has grandparents and other relatives visiting for the night. You can spend the evening putting together a time capsule. All you need is a shoe box, empty five-gallon bucket, or plastic bin. Have each child draw a picture of their favorite family activity from this year. Parents can write letters to the kids about the year. You can add pictures, video, movie tickets, or a scrapbook from a family vacation. Once everything is finished, pack up the box with all of the mementos of special events and put it away. You can open it up in 10 years on New Year’s Eve and do it all over again!

“Drop The Ball” Early—Sometimes celebrating New Year’s Eve can be hard when you have little kids. If you have little ones that can’t stay up until the wee hours of morning (or maybe mom and dad need a good night’s sleep) try having an early midnight. All you need to do is make your own ball to drop. You can buy a large Styrofoam ball at the craft store. You will also need craft glue, and sequins. Let the kids decorate the ball with sequins and ribbon. Attach a ribbon to the ball and hang it from the ceiling. You can cut the ribbon at the stroke of 9 pm and celebrate the “dropping” of the ball with the kids. You are then free to tuck everyone into bed and nobody missed a thing!

How do you like to ring in the New Year?

Picture courtesy of Wikimedia

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