You might have a love/hate relationship with New Years but this year, we’ll be ringing in a new decade so you have to celebrate! While partying after having kids is probably a bit more tame, it doesn’t mean you have to be boring! Our area is chock full of family-friendly ways to celebrate, both indoors and out. Grab a party hat and streamers and find some inspiration for your crew! Happy New Year 2020!

photo: Yards Park

Noon Yards Eve
Yards Park turns into a family-friendly wonderland with interactive activities for the kids and adults, including train rides, moon bounces, crafting, face painting, magicians, and more. The celebration features a countdown and balloon drop at noon.

Yards Park
301 Water St. SE
Time: 10 a.m.–1 p.m.
Cost: Free

Bull Run Festival of Lights
On New Year’s Eve, the Bull Run Festival of Lights and Holiday Village will be open for a special event to celebrate the coming year. Featuring rides, refreshments, and camel rides, the New Year’s celebration will also be your last chance of the year to enjoy the carnival inside the Holiday Village.
The Bull Run Festival of Lights is a popular drive-through Christmas lights attraction in Centreville, VA, that is open daily through January 5, 2020. With over two and a half miles of lights strung up in Bull Run Regional Park, the Festival of Lights is great for kids any time of the holiday season, but the Holiday Village is only open on select nights, including New Year’s Eve.

Bull Run
7700 Bull Run Dr., Centreville, VA
Time: 5:30 p.m.-10 p.m.
Cost: $20-25

Busy Bees Noon Year’s Party
You’re never too young for a Noon Year’s Party! Wave goodbye to 2019 and say hello to 2020 along with the Rainbow Rock Band. Play, dance, eat, count down to the new year and toast with bubbly cider to boot! Adults can party for free and admission includes pizza from Potomac’s.

Busy Bees Chevy Chase
11 Wisconsin Cir., Bethesda, MD
Cost: $30/child

photo: Priscilla du Preez via Unsplash 

First Night Alexandria
First Night Alexandria is the largest family-friendly and alcohol-free New Year’s Eve event in the area. See hundreds of performances on indoor stages throughout Old Town Alexandria. Entertainers include blue grass musicians, honky-tonk bands, clowns, magicians and classical musicians. Everything is within easy walking distances. And you ring in the new year, at midnight, with a spectacular fireworks display on the Potomac River at the foot of King Street sponsored by First Night Alexandria and MGM National Harbor!

Old Town Alexandria 
King St., Alexandria, VA 
Time: 2 p.m.-midnight
Cost: $30/13 & up

14th Annual Rocknoceros New Years Eve Party
For the 14th year in a row, the hyper popular kids band will once again get the little ones rockin’ at this special New Year’s Eve gig at Jammin Java. Rocknoceros will do a full-fledged countdown and an apple juice toast for all! Doors open at 10:30 a.m. They have two shows: 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. 

Jammin Java
227 Maple Ave. E, Vienna, VA
Time: 10:30 a.m. 
Cost: $10

photo: CCM

Annapolis New Year’s Eve Celebration
Based on the “First Night” concept of celebrating the past year of a community, the City of Annapolis, Maryland, brings the entire city together for a New Year’s Eve celebration. Ring in the New Year on Tuesday, December 31 and watch the City of Annapolis come alive with two firework shows, family activities, and lots of fun. The first set of fireworks will take place just after sunset at the Weems Whelan Field with tons of kid-friendly activities available, including face painting, music, and games. The second fireworks display will take place at City Dock when the clock strikes midnight. Live music and entertainment will be provided at both locations.935 Spa Rd.

Weems Whelan Field
935 Spa Rd, Annapolis, MD

City Dock
935 Spa Rd., Annapolis, MD
Time: 3 p.m.-midnight
Cost: Free

Noon Time New Year’s Celebration
Out with the old, in with the new! Celebrate the wonderful memories, fun, and adventures of 2019 — and the magical new things to come in 2020 — at Port Discovery Children’s Museum in Baltimore! Festivities will include a noontime countdown, juice and cookie toast and indoor dance party.

Port Discovery Children’s Museum
35 Market Pl., Baltimore, MD
Time: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. 
Cost: $17.95/ages 1 & up

Midnight Noon
The Maryland Science Center’s New Year’s Eve family extravaganza transforms the midnight tradition into something the whole family can enjoy. This annual tradition gives kids the opportunity to see the ball drop before bedtime. There will be fun New Year’s festivities throughout the day, including a live concert by popular kids band Milkshake. Their Grammy-nominated tunes will keep you dancing throughout the day.

The Maryland Science Center
600 Light St., Baltimore, MD
Time: 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Cost: free with admission; $25.95/12& up, $19.95/3-12

Fairfax Four Miler
The Fairfax Four Miler is a New Year’s Eve race that runs through the rolling hills of Old Town Fairfax and George Mason University. The 11th annual race starts at 6 p.m. on December 31 and is followed by a post-race pizza party. The post-race pizza and New Year’s Eve party will take place in the Old Town Hall. Advanced registration is required to secure a spot at the pizza party (and your own branded sweatshirt from the event), and prices for registration increase the longer you wait. Proceeds from the event support the Fairfax Police Youth Club.

Pacers Fairfax
10420 North St., Fairfax, VA
Time: 6 p.m.

Photo: Pete via flickr

Adventure Park USA Family New Year’s Eve Party
Although the outdoor rides at Adventure Park USA will be closed, you can still enjoy all the indoor attractions on the last day of the year followed by a Family New Year’s Eve Party from 9 p.m.-12:30 a.m. This family-friendly event includes finger foods and non-alcoholic drinks, kids’ games, live music and dancing, and access to all of the indoor attractions at Adventure Park USA.

Adventure Park USA
11113 West Baldwin Rd., Monrovia, MD
Time: 9 p.m.-midnight
Cost: $28.95/3 & up

Falls Church Watch Night
Free and fun for the whole family…words to our ears! Watch Night in Falls Church is the biggest event of the year for this small community. The 21st annual Watch Night starts at 7 p.m. and ends just after midnight on Jan. 1. Taking place on four blocks of West Broad Street, Watch Night features live performances by various musicians, a scavenger hunt, historical reenactments by the Victorian Society of Falls Church, special menus at area restaurants, obstacle courses, fire pits, and free noisemakers for the countdown. The evening concludes with a New Year’s countdown and lowering of the historic star that first lit the Falls Church sky in 1948.

Broad St. and S. Washington St., Falls Church, VA
Time: 7 p.m.-midnight
Cost: free

End the Year Medieval-Style
Experience an epic afternoon of fun and celebration as you countdown to 2020 at Medieval Times. Along with a four-course feast and thrilling jousting action, young guests can experience special activities just for the occasion before the extravaganza begins. Knight training, a queen story time, and free posters will make the day extra exciting for young revelers.

Medieval Times
7000 Arundel Mills Circle,  Hanover MD
Time: 3:30 p.m.
Cost: $37.95/adults, $30.95/kids

First Night Winchester
Like many First Night events across the country, First Night Winchester brings the community together for an evening of entertainment, art, and culture. With multiple stages around the city featuring live entertainment including performances of folk, jazz, bluegrass, oldies, puppet shows, and kids’ programs, First Night Winchester offers something for the whole family on New Year’s Eve. Performances for the 2020 celebration include the 92.5 WINC FM Dance Party, Acoustic Soul, the Battle of the Buskers at the Old Town Walking Mall, and Louie Foxx at the First Presbyterian Church. Additionally, local restaurants will be open and offering discounts as part of the First Taste of Winchester event that coincides with First Night. At midnight, participants can ring in the New Year with the official “Apple Drop” and midnight fireworks display.

Old Town Winchester
Winchester, VA
Time: 10 a.m.-midnight
Cost: $10

—Guiomar Ochoa and Jamy Bond


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