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Family Friendly Ideas to Ring in the New Year

Enjoy a high-energy game of exercise bingo as you race other teams to see who can win! This game is available at your local extension office.

Enjoy a high-energy game of exercise bingo as you race other teams to see who can win! This game is available at your local extension office.

The New Year is upon us, and it is so fun to celebrate its coming with our families.  Do you have a favorite New Year’s Tradition? If not, there is still time to plan one for this year!  Here are a few fun and easy ideas to inspire you:

  • New Year’s Eve Bonfire– roast hotdogs and marshmallows and enjoy hot chocolate by the fire.  More family friendly campfire recipes
  • Game Tournament– set up a tournament of games. You can play Minute to Win-It Style games, board games, or even electronic/video games.   Each hour until midnight, let a family member choose their favorite game to play.
  • Balloon Countdown– You will need a balloon for each hour of the countdown, depending on when you start. I recommend starting at 6PM, so you would need six balloons. Place a slip of paper with a craft, game or activity written on it. Place a slip in each balloon, then blow up the balloons and label each one with a number, representing each hour in the countdown until midnight. For example, at 6PM, have a family member pop the balloon with the number six on it, and then the family would do the activity listed on the slip of paper. Continue to pop balloons until midnight! Some of the activities you might include are: make paper hats, write down New Year’s Resolutions, make noisemakers, enjoy fireworks, etc.
  • Progressive Hors d ’Oeuvres– this sounds fancy, but is really simple. Just prepare your family’s favorite snacks. Each hour, enjoy a different snack until midnight.
  • Family Movie Night is another inexpensive favorite.  Make homemade pizza or pop popcorn and enjoy a night in with your family.
  • Fireworks can also be a fun activity, but be sure to read our tips on firework safety beforehand.
  • Balloon Drop– a nice alternative to fireworks. Use masking tape to tape together 2 lengths of netting.  Extend the tape to make a “rip cord.”  Fill with balloons and confetti and tape to the ceiling (use painter’s tape so you do not damage the paint).  At the stroke of midnight, pull on the rip cord and enjoy a cascade of celebratory balloons and confetti!
  • And finally, you can go all in and recreate your favorite game shows.  Imagine win-lose-or draw, family feud, the price is right…the possibilities are endless.

Do you have a favorite family New Year’s Eve tradition? If so, share in the comments!  We want to thank you for another great year in 4-H! If you are not currently a 4-H member or volunteer, contact your local UF IFAS County Extension Office for more information, or visit http://florida4h.org for more information.

PG

Author: Whitney Cherry – cherryw@ufl.edu

Whitney Cherry is a 4-H Extension Agent in the NW District.

Whitney Cherry

Permanent link to this article: http://jackson.ifas.ufl.edu/newsletters/2015/12/25/family-friendly-ideas-to-ring-in-the-new-year/