The ball may have dropped in Times Square, but the new year is still sparkling and bright. For 2012, make resolutions that will be a pleasure to keep. Like learning something new, introducing your kids to other cultures, or spending more time with your family dancing, creating art, and having fun together.

West side

O-Shogatsu at Japanese Garden (pictured, photo credit Jonathan Lay)
Resolution: Create meaningful traditions. Kick back with some green tea and try your hand at writing with brush and ink during O-Shogatsu (Japanese New Year)—the most important festival of the year in Japan. Sun. 12:00 pm. Japanese Garden. Free with Admission. All. Event details.

Portland Art Museum: Family Tour
Resolution: Expose yourself to art. Bring your family to explore the Museum with a guide skilled at engaging visitors of all ages. Sunday. 12:30 pm. Free with admission. All ages. Event details.

Italian Language Play Group
Resolution: Learn a new language. Pick up some Italian while your bambini play with new friends. Fri. 10:00 am – 11:00 am. Isobel’s Playhouse. Free. Pre-registration recommended. 18-36 months. Event details.

Winter Market Opens
Portland Farmers Market launches their inaugural winter market. Find winter produce, meats, cheeses, wine, seafood, baked goods and more. Hot food, warming soups and covered spaces available to chase away the chills. Saturday. 9:00 am. Shemanski Park. Free. All ages. Event details.

East side

Aaron Nigel Smith at Mississippi Pizza
Resolution: Dance more. This inspired and lively show is guaranteed to get the audience off their feet. Sat. 4:00 pm. Mississippi Pizza. $5/person. $15/family of 3 or more. All ages. Event details.


Slavic New Year
Resolution: Experience new cultures. Celebrate 2012 with music, dancing, crafts and authentic Russian treats. Sun. 2:30 pm – 4:30 pm. Gresham Library. Free. All ages. Event details.

–Cheyenne Terbrueggen