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New Year’s Eve when you’re in your 20s means something so different than New Year’s Eve as parents. Even if you’re still dressing up for a night on the town, you’re dealing with babysitters and maybe some regret to not ring in the new year with the little ones (or not, that’s okay too!). Personally I much prefer being home in comfy clothing with a few good friends for a kid friendly evening – some of my best New Year’s Eves were as a kid spent with parents and their friends!
How can I make similar memories for my kids? Spending the night with them, for one but beyond that? If you’re stumped too, we have some ideas for having a fun New Year’s Eve with kids.
One great way to ring in the new year with kids is to throw a kid-friendly New Years Party. Take a look at our 16 Fun New Years Eve ideas for kids to get you started. Whether it’s a party for your family or all the kids from the neighborhood we are sure these kid friendly New Year’s Eve ideas will be a hit.
16 Fun New Year’s Eve Ideas for Kids
- Start the party around 5 pm and do a countdown to 9 pm. This allows the young kids to get in on the fun and doesn’t make for a late night.
- Instead of serving a big meal serve lots of kid-friendly foods in appetizer size portions over the course of the night. This allows kids to pick and doesn’t take away from the fun.
- Set up board games for the kids to play.
- Stock up on noisemakers and glow sticks from the dollar store. Amazon has discounts for ordering in bulk online. Check out this Glow Party Pack with glowsticks, bracelets, eyeglasses, and headbands. A pack of noisemakers on Amazon is available for $4.
- Put out one craft for each hour of the countdown and have kids rotate between craft stations.
- Make your own noisemakers. Place dried beans, loose change or any other small item that makes noise in a Tupperware container, toilet paper roll (covered at both ends), or old coffee can and shake instant noise maker. You can also check out this easy New Years Eve noisemaker craft from Censie at Building Our Story.
- Ask guests (even the adults) to show up in their pajamas for a New Years PJs party.
- One word, confetti. It’s so easy to make confetti. Cut up leftover wrapping paper. Punch holes in scrap paper. No need to buy any, just use what you have.
- Toast at midnight with sparkling cider or mix their favorite punch with some 7-up. Take a fancy bowl and turn it into a punch bowl.
- Set up a photo booth with props. Put out disposable cameras for kids to play photographer with. Or use your camera and print the photos to your camera using HP Social Snapshots sticky photo paper. I’m loving these photo props on Amazon.
- Keep some sleeping bags nearby in case anyone gets tired.
- Put together a video of all the highlights of the year. It will be a great way to see how the kids have grown and keepsake to look back on.
- Make a time capsule filled with things from 2020. Amazon has time capsules that start at $12 or make your own with a shoebox or bin.
- For older kids have them fill out a year in review survey where they can fill in things like: Favorite song, Favorite field trip, or Best Movie. Tweens and teens can also make their predictions for 2021.
- Create a unique drop of your own. Use our listing of the MOST Unique New Year’s Eve Drops Around the United States as inspiration. Have your kids tie their favorite toys to a string and lower them from the upstairs downward as it gets closer to ‘midnight’.
- Serve breakfast at midnight.
Keep it simple, for a kid just being able to stay up past their bedtime is a treat. If a late night or a big party isn’t your thing, remember there is no shame is going to bed at 10 and waking up to a New Year. You can always save these New Year’s Eve idea for kids for another year.