With all the bubbles, balls, and noisemakers, the classic New Year’s Eve celebration would be perfect for kids– if it weren’t for that whole staying-up-til-midnight thing. (And let’s face it, most of us with young children are unlikely to be up past 10 p.m. anyway, amirite?). The good news is, Portland offers plenty of family-friendly daytime opportunities to count down to 2020 with even the littlest revelers. Here’s our take on the best ways to ring in the New Year, without ruining bedtime. Read on for all the details!
Get out your dancing shoes and boogie at this free (first-come-first served!) celebration at the library. For kids under five, this celebration includes balloons, activities to celebrate the new year, and snacks– all before naptime.
Dec. 31, 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
2300 NW Thurman Street
Portland, OR 97210
Bring the kids to the museum for several countdowns, arts and crafts, music and dancing, and even a glow-in-the-dark fun room! Stick around for more fun at the museum’s regular exhibits– just be aware it closes early, at 3 p.m.
Dec. 31, 11 a.m.- 2 p.m.
$11/adults and kids, free for babies 1 and under
4015 SW Canyon Rd.
One more Noon Year’s Eve option– this time with bubble wrap! Head to the library Annex at the Garden Home Community Library for games, snacks and apple cider, and plenty of bubble wrap to pop. A quirky-fun way to ring in 2020 with your littlest noisemakers.
A unique take on the midday celebration, this time with a bouncy house and a pool float afterward! Head to the Jewish Community Center in the Southwest to get your countdown on.
– 6651 SW Capitol Highway
Come on out to the Alberta Street Pub for some food and fun with local favorite Mo Phillips! He’s dubbing this year’s festivities New Year’s Eve Brunchy Good Times, and you and your kids can join in for dancing, singing, and rocking out to your favorite Mo Phillips tunes.
Dec. 31, 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.
Alberta St. Pub
1036 NE Alberta St.
photo: Amanda Tipton via flickr
With a balloon drop and games, this is a fancy shindig for the younger set. Hang out for the party, then shop their well-curated toy store for anything Santa missed.
Portland, OR 97206
Grab a slice of pizza and enjoy great music from this high-energy kids’ group– Portland’s kindie dance party band. Made up of three stay-at-home dads, this group has been entertaining local families for over five years. They’ll have a full band at this special show. And PS! If you’re in Tualatin, you can catch them at the Tualatin Library at 11 a.m. on New Year’s Eve!
Dec. 31, 5:30-6:30 p.m.
3552 N Mississippi Ave.
Portland, OR 97227
If you missed this spectacular seasonal event earlier– or even if you didn’t!– consider Zoolights for a festive New Year’s Eve outing at the zoo. The lights are up through Jan. 5, and you can bundle up with warm drinks and snacks for a magical train ride. This is a fun, slightly later option for bigger kids, open until 9 p.m. Qualifying families can enjoy Zoolights at reduced rates as part of the Oregon Zoo’s Zoo For All event.
$17.95/adults, $12.95/children 3-11, free for children under 2 (online ticket prices)
4001 Southwest Canyon Road
Another option for older kids is the annual all-ages New Year’s Eve skate party, in the historic roller rink at Oaks Amusement Park, in operation since 1906. With a live DJ, games, and specials (plus a midnight countdown for those able to stay up late), this is a fun and active way to welcome 2020. Tickets include rollerskate rental.
Dec. 31, 7 p.m.-1 a.m.
$22 per skater
7805 SE Oaks Park Way
Portland, OR 97202
New Year’s Activities for Mom & Dad
You celebrated with the kiddos during the day, and you managed to get a sitter so you could ring in the New Year like a childless 21-year-old. See if you can make it to midnight at one of these events!
Fruition NYE Concert at Revolution Hall
Head to the iconic Revolution Hall to party with Portland-based roots-rockers band Fruition. This band is a local favorite that’s been embraced internationally and brings music to the stage that is a unique blend rock and roll, soul, blues, and British Invasion era pop. Revolution Hall is the perfect venue for listening to live music, dancing and clinking glasses when the midnight hour arrives. Fruition knows how to party and will have something new to offer first-timers as well as longtime fans with songs from their new album Wild As The Night released earlier last month.
Dec. 31, 8 p.m.
1300 SE Stark St #110
Portland, OR 97214
Edgefield McMenamins 2020 New Years Eve Celebration
Nothing says a good time like a night at the Edgefield, but spending New Year’s Eve at this local hot spot is a no-brainer. Reserve a room and a sitter (or grandparent) and leave the kids to sleep while you slip off for some music, drinks and dancing. There’s live music by Loading Dock and Blackberry Hall booked all night, all the bars are open, and you might even get a soak in before the night is done.
$15 advance, $20 day of
9 p.m.-12:30 a.m.
2126 SW Halsey St,
Troutdale, OR 97060