New Year's Eve with kids doesn't have to be a snooze. These fun events for all ages will have your family celebrating the New Year together! Who wouldn't want to check out fun fireworks, new exhibits and cool performances to set the tone for 2017?
RECOMMENDED: New Year's Eve for kids in NYC
For more fun with the whole crew after your New Year's Eve with kids is over, resolve to try our favorite 101 things to do with kids in NYC, explore our top family attractions and read more together with our list of top-notch books for kids.
New Year's Eve events for kids
Join Children's Museum of Manhattan in celebrating the New Year! On December 30 and 31 (various times), kids can join in on a "Dress Your Best for the New Year" craft to create a special hat and funny glasses (ages 6 and up, sign-up required in lobby one hour before the event), or "Make Some Noise!" with a noisemaker craft (all ages, drop-in). On December 31 alone, you can also drop in for a New Year's Eve Ball Drop & Parade (12, 2 and 4pm, all ages, drop-in) for a fun countdown or visit 2:30–4pm for a dance party with Dj Chela (all ages, drop-in).
Take the crew to Prospect Park for hot refreshments and a bombastic coup de grace at midnight. Before the big show, enjoy live entertainment! The best viewing locations for fireworks include anywhere in Grand Army Plaza, inside the park on the West Drive, and along Prospect Park West between Grand Army Plaza and 9th Street. All ages.
It's a balmy 80 degrees in the museum's 1,200-square-foot vivarium, which holds up to 500 tropical lepidoptera. The free-flying butterflies often land on the shoulders of visitors, allowing tykes to come into direct contact with the ethereal creatures. Outside the vivarium, youngsters can read up on the life cycle of butterflies, how to protect their habitats and what kinds of adaptations certain species have. All ages.
The charistmatic youngster from Jane O'Connor's best-selling children's book series comes to life in this family musical from Vital Theatre Company. Fancy Nancy can't get enough of the wrapping paper, decorations and sweets that Christmas brings—after all, the holidays are the fanciest time of year! When things go awry while her family is busy decking the halls, Nancy learns that, with a little teamwork, Christmas can still be splendiferous. Ages 2 to 7.
Greet the New Year with this walk across the Brooklyn Bridge with thousands of fellow New Yorkers! During the walk, you'll see fireworks from Central Park, Staten Island and Brooklyn, and staggered, guided tours will take place between 10:15pm and 11:15pm. Meet at 9:45pm (when processing starts at 160 Broadway in front of McDonald's between Liberty and Court Sts). Please rsvp by phone or email (646-493-7092, firstname.lastname@example.org) prior to the event.
Put the ohhh-ahhh in ahhh-mazing with these New Year's Eve fireworks. NYC will be filled with the iconic bursts of light over the neon dream of Times Square, or you can head to one of the best NYC Parks—Prospect Park—to check out it’s awesome display of pyrotechnics with a cup of hot cocoa in hand. Once the light show is over, head to one of the other great New Year's Eve events or late-night New Year’s Eve concerts in NYC.
Magician Max Darwin, otherwise know as The Amazing Max, presents his stage show that mixes both magic and comedy. Max will make objects appear and disappear and defy the laws of physics in this playful interactive show that will definitely keep the kiddos intrigued. Ages 3 and up.
This enchanting production is the one people have in mind when they ask, "Have you been to The Nutcracker?" The New York City Ballet's full roster of ballerinas, danseurs and musicians—plus children from the School of American Ballet—perform Balanchine's classic choreography. Princess-smitten tots will fall for the Sugar Plum Fairy and the Snow Queen, but all kids will get a kick out of the one-ton Christmas tree that "grows" to 40 feet onstage, and Mother Ginger, who hides little dancers under her nine-foot-wide skirt. Ages 5 and up.
“Crocs: Ancient Predators in a Modern World” dives into the lives of crocodilians (the group that includes crocodiles, alligators, caimans and gharials) to give families a closer look at their behaviors, biology, evolution and more! Families will also learn how to “speak croc,” see a model of Gomek, the biggest crocodile ever exhibited in the Western Hemisphere, and test their knowledge with fun facts and trivia. Visitors will encounter the (live!) Siamese crocodile, American alligator, African dwarf crocodile, African slender-snouted crocodile plus life-sized dioramas of the Australian freshwater crocodile, the Indian Gharial, the Estuarine crocodile and the Cuviers dwarf caiman. Yes…you heard us right. Live crocodilians. All ages.