We’re not big New Years Eve people here at the SFM house, mainly because the idea of staying up until midnight lost its appeal about two kids ago.
But, there is something about a shiny, New Year all full of promise. If you and your kiddos want to mark the occasion, here are some ideas for a kid friendly New Years in the South Sound!
First Night is a big, family friendly event in downtown Tacoma. Area museums have various hands-on projects, and performance venues will have special kid friendly shows. Some of them really do sound cool this year, like a mini ballet lesson themed around Alice in Wonderland, or rabbit headband making at the children’s museum. 2011 is the Year of the Rabbit-get it? There are also jugglers, giant puppets, fire dancers, and more! All the activities are free once you purchase a special “First Night,” button, which also gets you into all the downtown museums. Buttons are 10.00 for adults and 5.00 for kids 7 and up if you purchase in advance. Wait until the 31st and you’ll pay a bit more. Given the parking situation in downtown Tacoma, you may want to budget for that, too.
Now, First Night officially starts at 6:30, but most of the museums are closing at 5:00 (the Children’s Museum stays open until 7:00). If you’re interested in museum going, go earlier in the day and do that first. Then use the schedule and program to plan what other shows and fun you want to see. If you like a more active New Years, there is also a special fun run, Tacoma’s Last Mile. The First Night website has all the scoop you need, just be sure to go to the “Program,” section and look at the Just for Kids section, as well as Museums and Nonsense (gotta love it).
Want something quieter? Zoolights and Fantasy Lights are both open on New Years Eve, though not until midnight!
Or maybe you just want to wear the kids out and ring in the New Year quietly with your favorite T.V. host or your significant other. Pump it Up! has a special jump event in the morning for 2-6 year olds that just might do the trick. This event is 10.00 and includes juice and pizza. Reservations suggested.
Of course, another alternative is to find a sitter (good luck with that) and enjoy an adult evening.
Your sister already booked grandma? Consider partying with some of your pals. You can pick a time zone and celebrate the New Year at a kid friendly hour. Do some easy crafts if you want. We did this one year with our friends Mike and Jen, and it really was a lot of fun. The kids all jumped up and down and blew horns along with New York and everyone got off the roads well before midnight, which was great.
Whatever you do, make sure to stay safe. Let me know if you’ve got a great idea I missed! I’ll also have your regular weekend list coming up on Friday.
Photo credit: Nuttakit at freedigitalphotos.net