To be perfectly honest, New Year’s Eve has become one of my least favorite holidays since having kids. Finding a babysitter can be (and always is!) challenging. Trying to drag our kids along to late-night parties just ends in misery. And dealing with a hangover/sleep deprivation/caring for our young children the next day is its own uniquely horrible form of torture. So this year we’ve decided to avoid these headaches completely and forego attending an adult’s-only, crazy-fun party. Instead, we’re going to check out some of the family-friendly alternatives in Pittsburgh.
In this post, I’ve put together a list of Pittsburgh’s Family-Friendly New Year’s Celebrations. Although I couldn’t find a huge range of options, there are certainly enough events to keep your family busy all day AND night. Also, many of these events happen during the day so you can still check them out even if you’re planning on attending an adult party later that evening. Finally, there are a couple of events at the end of the list that take place in the days after New Year’s Eve.
Here’s the list, organized by date and time.
Celebrate New Year’s Eve at a family-friendly party at the Children’s Museum. There will be live performances, art activities in the Studio, and a countdown to Noon!
Cost: Free with admission
Location: 10 Children’s Way, Pittsburgh, PA 15212
New Year’s Eve Countdown for Kids at Fun Fest-December 31
Fun Fest on Freeport Rd. offers a family-friendly New Year’s Eve Celebration. Prepaid price includes unlimited bowling games (for 6), unlimited laser tags games, and 50 game tokens. Plus, there will be a countdown to noon.
Cost: $39.95 with a prepaid reservation. Must be received by December 29th. Cost at door is $12/person. Advance Registration strongly suggested.
Location: 2525 Freeport Rd, Pittsburgh, PA 15238
Celebrate New Year’s Eve at a family-friendly party at the Pittsburgh Zoo. There will be live entertainment, dancing, and a noon ball drop.
Cost: Free with Admission
Location: 7340 Butler St, Pittsburgh, PA 15206
Jammie Jam 2014, New Year’s at Noon Celebration-December 31
Macaroni Kid is hosting this family-friendly celebration at Latitude 40 Entertainment Destination in Robinson. This facility offers a huge range of entertainment options including bowling, arcade games, movie theaters and more. Plus, this event will feature music, dancing, face-painting, balloon art, a clown, crafts, and more. Stay tuned: I will be running a giveaway for tickets to this event soon!
Cost: Children $8 (under 24 months free), Adults $4
Location: 200 Quinn Dr, Pittsburgh, PA 15275
Hofbrauhaus New Year’s Eve Party-December 31
Hofbrauhaus will have live entertainment to accompany its German cuisine all day.
Times: Noon-1:30am (Jan 1st)
Cost: No additional costs, except food and beverages
Location: 2705 S Water St, Pittsburgh, PA 15203
Celebrate New Year’s Eve at a family-friendly party at Phipps Conservatory. Explore the Winter Flower Show during its Candlelight Evening hours and check out the Winter Light Garden as well. Plus, there will be a New Year’s countdown at 8:45.
Cost: Free with Admission
Location: 700 Frank Curto Drive, Pittsburgh, PA 15213
Fun Fore All New Year’s Eve Party-December 31
Celebrate New Year’s Eve at Fun Fore All. Admission includes All-You-Can-Eat Buffet and drinks, free ballocity, video games, face painting, goodie bags, hot cocoa, and fire pit with s’mores (weather-permitting).
Cost: $17.99/person, $6.99 buffet only. Must register in advance
Location: 8 Progress Ave, Cranberry Twp, PA 16066
Highmark’s 2014 First Night-December 31
This event is definitely the largest family-friendly New Year’s Eve celebration in the region. It includes a huge line-up of activities including a parade, dance and musical performances, an artisan market, ice carving demonstrations, magic and comedy shows, face painting, balloons, fortune-telling, arts and crafts stations, a kid’s dance party, fireworks, and SO MUCH MORE! There is even a brand-new Ice Labyrinth that sounds REALLY cool! A full schedule of events can be found here.
Cost: A “Button” gives you access to all of the events. $8 in advance; $10 night-of; kids 5 & under are free. Buy here.
Location: Throughout the Cultural District downtown
Wildwood Highlands New Year’s Eve Celebration-December 31
Celebrate New Year’s Eve at Wildwood Highland’s, North Park’s Family Fun Center. The party includes an All-You-Can-Eat buffet until 8pm, unlimited soft drinks and coffee until 9pm, unlimited laser tag and soft play, a DJ dance party, karaoke, balloon and spin art, party favors, 12 tokens, and a sparkling juice toast and balloon drop at 9pm!
Cost: $16.50/person in advance, $17.99/at the door. Children 23 months and under are free.
Location: 2330 Wildwood Rd, Hampton Township, PA 15101
MessFest 2014-January 1
Billed as a “messy way to kick off the New Year,” the Carnegie Science Center has a unique tradition of helping families get totally yucky on New Year’s Day. There will be slime, finger-painting, digging in “mars soil,” and lots more!
Cost: Free with Admission
Location: 1 Allegheny Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15212
Kid City’s New Year’s Celebration-January 4
Join DJ Kelly Mom at a special New Year’s Celebration at the Hollywood Theatre. There will be a kid-friendly dance party, music video projections, balloon drop, juice toast, art lab, and vegan snack bar. Plus, it’s BYOB!
Times: 2-6pm with balloon drop at 4pm
Cost: $5/adult and kids are free
Location: 1449 Potomac Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15216
That’s all I have for now! I will continue to hunt for additional events over the next couple of weeks so be sure to check back :).
Wishing you and your families a safe and happy New Year’s Eve and a blessed 2014!
© Copyright 2013 Nadine Champsi, All rights Reserved. Written For: The Pittsburgh Mommy Blog
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