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Best New Year's Events and Activities for Seattle-Area Families

Awesome ways to ring in 2021 with kids

Nancy Chaney

Published on: December 22, 2020

Mom and son at home happily celebrating new year 2021 best family events around Seattle Tacoma Bellevue Puget Sound

Have we ever been more excited to close the door on a year and move on to the next? I doubt it. We do not heart you, 2020. Goodbye!

Like everything, we'll be ringing in 2021 in new and different ways. We've rounded up some ideas to help you and your family celebrate New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day.

Family activities for New Year’s Eve: Thursday, Dec. 31, 2020

KiDiMu Noon Year's Eve Party Box: Pick-up Dec. 22 or 29, 10 a.m.–4 p.m.
Celebrate at home and get loud with the Kids Discovery Museum on Bainbridge Island. Order a Noon Year’s Eve Party Box full of New Year’s fun to enjoy at home. You will find noisemakers, games, New Year’s crafts and more to properly ring in 2021!

Family Countdown to Noon Year’s Eve: Dec. 31, 9:30 a.m. (11:30 a.m. CST)
Join Tunes with Tim and Monica + Andy online — wear your formal attire! — to ring in the New Year at noon (central time) with a countdown and special musical performance. 

Noon Year's Eve Celebration with KCLS: Thursday, Dec. 31, 11 a.m.
Welcome the New Year at a decent hour with KCLS. Join online at 11 a.m. for New Year themed crafts, then a mini-concert and countdown to Noon with children's singer Nancy Stewart.

Countdown to Noon with Pierce County Library System: Thursday, Dec. 31, 11:30 a.m.
Celebrate Noon Year from home with the Pierce County Library. Join online for crafts, games, songs and of course a countdown to noon!

Rockin' Rockfish Noon Year's Eve with the Seattle Aquarium: Thursday, Dec. 31, 11:30 a.m.
Join the Seattle Aquarium online for a rockin' good time. Dance to music by Mikey the Rad Scientist, learn about the aquarium resident animals and more. Plus, a countdown to noon!

Kid-focused home New Year's soiree: You won't be calling a babysitter and heading out on the town. Make your own at-home party fun to ring in the new year with homemade noisemakers, a family time capsule (to remember this weird year) or a photo booth.

Brew up a special mocktail: These fun beverage recipes can make New Year's Eve at home feel special and fun. Try mixing up a Holiday Shirley Temple or Sparkling Pear Cider Mocktail with kids. Be sure to use fancy glasses. And if 2020 has left you parents in need of a stiff drink, there are some options for adding alcohol to the grown-ups' drinks. 

New Year’s at the Needle: Thursday, Dec. 31, 11:30 p.m.
The annual New Year’s show at the Space Needle is going to be quite different this year. Enjoy digital effects and interesting artistic visuals layered over real video footage of the Space Needle streamed online or on KING 5 starting at 11:35 p.m.

Family activities for New Year’s Day: Friday, Jan. 1, 2021

Virtual Polar Bear Plunge: Friday, Jan. 1, 2021 
To really wash off stinky 2020, how about a dunk in some very cold water? This year, Friends of Lake Sammamish State Park invite you to a virtual Polar Bear Plunge. Register for $10, then get creative and plunge yourself in the bathtub, a pool, or wherever there is cold water. Take a picture and send it in! The first 200 registrants will receive a commemorative gaiter and coupon for free Ivar's clam chowder! 

First Day Hikes: Friday, Jan. 1, 2021
Kick off 2021 with a healthy dose of nature. This year, there won’t be any organized hikes but that shouldn’t stop you from exploring a trail on the first day of the year. Jan. 1 is a state parks free day, when the usual Discover Pass parking pass requirement is waived. Pick any park you like and go exploring.

"Travel" the globe with lucky new year foods: Explore different cultures without leaving home by cooking up a traditional meal or dessert that's sure to bring about better times in 2021. Szczęśliwego Nowego Roku!

Editor's note: This article was originally published a few years ago and updated most recently for 2020.

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