Boston’s Best Family-Friendly New Year’s Parties

December 21, 2012 5:00 AM

(Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images)

If staying home for New Year’s Eve just won’t cut it this year, Boston has a party for you and yours. From First Night Boston to masquerade fun and the perfect party for even your moody teen, this city’s new year is a guaranteed good time at the most family friendly parties around.

The Grand Procession makes its way through Copley Square in Boston.

The Grand Procession makes its way through Copley Square in Boston.

2013 First Night Boston
36 Bromfield St. Suite 204
Boston, MA 02108
(617) 542-1399

Price: free
Time: parade – 5:30 p.m.; ice show – 6 p.m.; fireworks – 6:45 p.m.

First Night Boston has been an extraordinary celebration here for decades. This year’s grand parade theme is “over the horizon.” The parade will launch at the Hynes Convention Center and proceed down Boylston Street. You’ll have your fill of brass bands, floating ice sculptures, puppets and costumes. The Boston Common Frog Pond features an ice skating show with national and local, award-winning figure skaters just before the rink opens to the public. Don’t forget the fireworks on the baseball field, or your first night button, which gives you free access to inside events and one or two free cocktails with discounts to shows or restaurants. Most family shows and activities are presented in the afternoon, so come in early and make a day of it. Indoor and outdoor locations all across the city will have nonstop performances from ballets to local bands, balls to banquets, poetry slams to mimes. Leave the car behind and take advantage of free public transportation. Hours are extended this night to make sure you get your fill of the activities and arrive home safely.

Boston skyline

Boston skyline

New Year’s Eve Day Harbor Cruise
70 Long Wharf
Boston, MA 02110
(617) 770-0040

Price: $12 adults 13 to 64 years/$8 children 4 to 12 and seniors 65 and older/free children younger than 3
Time: 2 p.m.; 3 p.m.; 4 p.m.

Cruise Boston Harbor in luxury with the family to witness a view of the celebrations like none other. The cabins are heated, and a complimentary fare of chowder and hot cocoa awaits for the perfect Boston-style New Year’s Eve with the family. Enjoy an exciting 45-minute adventure for the family, one that may never be duplicated again. Winter on the water in Boston, though underrated, is a must this holiday season.

(credit: DickClarkMises/Wikimedia Commons)

(credit: DickClarkMises/Wikimedia Commons)

Spectacle Island 2013 Day Trip
Spectacle Island
Boston MA 02110
(781) 740-4290

Price: start at $19 to $27
Time: Noon to 4 p.m.

Friends of Boston Harbor are sponsoring a boating trip for your family this year. Take advantage of guided tours by volunteers on the first day of 2013. Spectacle Island is usually closed this time of year, making this an extra special event for the family. All ages are welcome. The view into Boston harbor is an absolute “spectacle.” A treasure hunt is on the agenda and, in addition to outdoor hiking activities, a tour of The Grave Light is included in your ticket price. Pack a picnic, no food is sold. Pets and alcohol are not allowed either.

Blue Hills 2013 Day Hike
840 Hillside St.
Milton, MA 02186
(617) 698-1802

Price: free
Time: noon to 3 p.m.

Weather permitting, DCR Park Rangers and Trailside Museum staff will warm up a hearty soup to begin a winter woods marathon. Be sure to dress the family in layers, sturdy shoes and bring your canteens, this trip is mammoth. Different trails and features allow for all ages and abilities, so don’t fret, just enjoy the winter wonderland at your own pace. With a museum, observatory and science center, there may not be enough time to see everything available. So, strap the youngsters onto your mountain bike, tow along a sled while you ice skate, or hitch the line to every teen in the family during the rock climb; pick your passion. Guided hikes are available all day, starting on the hour. Bring along the camera, this is sure to be an event you’ll want to remember.

(Photo from Facebook)

(Photo from Facebook)

The Palladium
261 Main St.
Worcester, MA 01608
(508) 797-9696

Price: $20 until Dec. 25/$25 Dec 26 to 30/$29 day of
Time: doors open – 5 p.m.; show starts – 6 p.m.

This is an all-ages venue. No alcohol is served on the premises, and all seating is general admission. No pyrotechnics are used, and fire, police and safety personnel attend each show. This venue is one of the safest, most welcoming places to let your teenager have his or her own special NYE celebration. The Palladium has two clubs on two floors, downstairs will feature “Clutch,” “Mondo Generation,” “Saviours” and “Wino” this year. The dancing and music may never end. Enjoy your adults-only new year’s while giving your teen the freedom to dance into 2013.

Freelance writer Corinne Costantino presents expert tips and tricks to everything Boston with over 30 yrs of shopping and fashion sense. Get your edge on everyday style with a Master Seamstress and Art enthusiast. Recently designing her own clothing line and sharing her unique wardrobe with friends and family, featuring many pieces in textile shows
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