The holiday season always seems to come and go so quickly! Before you know it, Thanksgiving and Christmas have passed us by and we’re preparing to enter not only another year but another decade! If you happened to slack on the New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day plans this year, here are 5 activities you can do in your local community, and if you’re able to travel and down for a quick getaway, there’s a destination for each activity we know you will love.
Catch One Last Glimpse of Holiday Lights
A great way to say goodbye to the holiday season and last year is to do one last tour and view some holiday lights. It’s an amazing way to usher in the New Year and you can check out local light shows in your community, or do something as simple as drive around that one neighborhood that gets it right every year!
Field Stream Farm Formerly known as Ten Ten lights, Field Stream Farm features a drive-through light show that is perfect for all ages! Over 1 million lights decorate the acres of farmland and the tour includes an LED-lit tunnel equipped with more than 200,000 lights alone! Tickets are based on the number of passengers in a vehicle.
Located at the Koka Booth Amphitheatre, the Chinese Lantern Festival is about a 20 minute drive from Raleigh and will return this year for the fifth year including more than 20 new displays. Illuminate your holidays this year and witness the magnificent setting of holiday lights, lanterns, and even cultural performances. The cultural performances and artisan crafts this season will include Chinese drumming, juggling, face-changing, dance, acrobats, martial arts, and more!
Nothing is quite as magical as watching fireworks explode in the sky while you’re ushering the new decade. Checkout fireworks in your local area, the shows are usually free and should cost you next to nothing. Grab your friends, loved ones, and a cup of hot chocolate and make sure that midnight is extra sparkly this year!
Reel in the New Year at The Wharf! Experience live bands, face painting, and even a surf simulator! This New Year’s Eve party will start around 5 pm with family-friendly activities for the kids. Put your athleticism to the test and ride a mechanical bull, climb a rock wall, or trampoline jump! The Travis Clark Band and the Jason Jones Band will make sure you have tunes until the fireworks start at midnight!
Hang With the Kids
Welcome in the New Year with your biggest fans! Start a new family tradition and choose an activity you all can enjoy to celebrate and entertain kids at any age! Local museums, zoos, botanical gardens, and bowling rinks usually host activities or festivals that are kid-friendly and will help them get excited for what the New Year can bring as well. There may even be a favorite nearby indoor waterpark
Everything is bigger in Texas and New Year’s Eve festivals are no different! If you’re in the area, participate in the 2nd annual Hill Country New Year’s Eve bash! Head to the beautiful Hill Country of Concan, Texas for a 3-day event filled with amazing activities like live music, a bounce house, a snow machine, glow in the dark putting, and more!
Get Active: 5K Run; Hike, Polar Bear Plunge
Over 45% of people make resolutions to be more active and lose weight during the New Year. Start your New Year’s off on the right foot and maybe even with a splash! Check your local area and see if there will be any New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day runs you can participate in. Not only will you feel better about getting a head start on your resolution, but many runs are connected to a charitable organization as well!
Join in for the annual Prance and Plunge held at Wildcat Lake Park. You can get friends and family to come along as you walk, skip, or run the 3.4 miles that make up the trail around Wildcat Lake. In the end, you can take (an optional) plunge into the lake, refreshing all of those New Year’s goals. Afterward, enjoy a well-deserved snack by the fire! All proceeds from the Prance and Plunge will go to the preservation of Wildcat Lake Park.
Go Ice Skating, Skiing, or Sledding
f you’re a lover of the cold or don’t mind chilly temperatures then find an ice skating rink that’s open near you! Ring in the New Year on ice! This is the perfect activity for a sweetheart date or even one that family and friends can enjoy together.
The White Mountains of New Hampshire is one of New England’s most scenic destinations with a spectacular mountain region and natural attractions that will provide your family with a lifetime of memories. Join King Pine Ski Area at Purity Spring Resort for a family-friendly New year’s Eve celebration. Grab a package that the whole family can enjoy! Head to White Mountain for a weekend filled with outdoor activities, music, and bonfires at the base of King Pine. Get your day started with a full country breakfast and fill your day with fun things to do like ice skating, face painting, and even magic.
Stay Home – Enjoy A night with each other, family and/or friends.
A night on the town can be fun! Depending on where you would go, it may often take some planning, dressing up, and a premium out of your pocket. Why not enjoy your cozy home with a romantic night in, with the family, or invite a few friends over!
You can bake and/or cook a meal together. Buy a variety of appetizers or fun foods, play games like trivia from the past decade, listen to music, or have a movie theme night. You can keep it classic and watch the variety of New Year’s Eve shows too!