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New Year’s Eve With Kids

By Melissa Summers

For the fourth year in a row we’re hosting a family-friendly New Year’s Eve party with our friends. I shared some great ideas last year, but thought I’d throw out a few more for your viewing pleasure for the 07-08 party.
This year since we’ve moved to a place with quite a bit more room than our last home, we added two other families to the celebration. The attendees count is now at twelve adults and seventeen children ranging from 2 – 10 years old. The party may or may not be fun but it will almost certainly be loud.

In an effort to keep the kids engaged I have a few very simple activities we’ll do with them to keep them reasonably entertained. I’ve learned from experience, seventeen children with nothing to focus on quickly attempt to commit anarchy and the result is very unpleasant on the ears, even with expanded square footage.
New Year's Eve ideas With Kids
This simple noisemaker would be fun to make and because kids love noise, a rewarding activity for them. This kids’ noisemaker version is a little more complicated but awfully cute and without the tin can, perhaps a little more tolerable for adults.

New Year's Eve ideas With Kids
At midnight we’ll push the furniture out of the way and line the floor with bubble wrap so the kids can stomp in the New Year. You can find bubble wrap in bulk at some office supply stores, one chain in my area sells a large box of it but the other chain does not, call ahead and ask. From experience larger bubbles pop far easier with a much greater sound.

New Year's Eve ideas With Kids

As a party favor I’ll be sending home every family with a container of black eyed peas in carry out containers. Eating black eyed peas to ring in the new year is an old southern tradition, said to bring luck in the year.
The first year we hosted this party we planned to have a 10pm “Pretend New Year’s” with our kids, at 12:30am they were still awake. We don’t even make a fake-out attempt anymore. Though we do try to ply them with a steady stream of movies and lots of sleeping bags and pillows.

How do you include your kids in your New Year’s Eve celebration?

Melissa Summers
About the Author

Melissa Summers

Melissa Summers was a regular contributor writing Melissa’s Buzz Off.


Melissa Summers was a regular contributor writing Melissa’s Buzz Off.

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  • I love the idea of having a “bar station” just for kids. Specialty fruit drinks for them and finger foods. A place where they can “hang.”
    Obviously, you need to make sure their drinks are a distinctive different color than the adult cocktail. Ha!

  • Another suggestion for family activities, if you’re home on New Year’s. Help your kids safely navigate the Internet to learn why 2008 is being called “The Year of the Frog.” Like Kermit said, it’s hard being green, especially today. Amphibians face the worst mass extinction since the dinosaurs — but there is a sensible, very achievable way to stop it. Learn about it, with your kids, by visiting, or my blog, Zoos around the world are ringing in this special new year by having kids play the leapfrog game on New Year’s Eve. But still, on the Web sites I just mentioned, you can download a fun, New Year’s frog mask, see videos that explain it all, including one by Jeff Corwin, and learn a lot of fascinating things about amphibians. The main thing killing frogs isn’t what you’d suspect — it’s a fungus that broke out of Africa in the 1940s. Oh, and instead of banging pots and pans at midnight, go outside and play family leapfrog. Have fun. Hoppy New Year.

  • We go bowling. Good fun for parents and kids alike…then we head to one of the homes to eat leftover christmas treats and drink (root beer and of course beer/bubbly for the grown ups 😉 Our first NYE doing this ended at 2:30am after the adults pushed the kids out from the DDR and Karoeke on the playstation. I’m sure they need therapy after seeing us all singing and dancing (although one friends son STILL talks about seeing the church secretary beat his mom at DDR)

  • What fun ideas! The bubble wrap such a great tip! Found you through Tip Junkie.