With the holidays right around the corner, you're probably planning a New Year's Party for your friends and relatives. And you'll have to keep the kids busy with lots of games and activities!

New Year's Eve Scramble

Ingredients
  • Paper
  • Scissors
To Play
  • Write different words on pieces of paper that related to New Year's Eve.
  • Cut up the paper and scramble the letters.
  • Everyone has to make New Year’s Eve words out of the pieces of paper.
  • The person who guesses the most words correctly wins a prize.

Predict the Future

Ingredients
  • Magazine Pictures
To Play
  • Throughout the party, present magazine pictures to each table of kids. These pictures should show something from the past year, such as a winning football game, a new toy, a political event, etc.
  • Each table of kids must make a prediction for the next year, based on the picture. For example: The Yankees will win the pennant, Bill Clinton will become a rock star, the president will be a woman, and so on. Keep providing pictures after each course for the kids' predictions.

New Year’s Eve Parade
 
Remember the days of banging pots and pans around the neighborhood at 12:00AM and keeping the neighbors awake until all hours? This activity rings in the memories.

Ingredients
  • Pots & Pans
  • Noisemakers
To Play
  • Collect all of the kids around 11:50AM and hand out the pots and pans and noisemakers.
  • Then send the kids outside to make all of the noise when the clock strikes midnight.
  • Have them march up and down the driveway and through the neighborhood.
 
New Year’s Eve Balloon Countdown
 
Ingredients
  • 10-12 Balloons
  • Slips of Paper
  • Materials for Activities
  • Permanent Marker
To Play
  • Before playing this game, on slips of paper write down 10-12 activities you plan on doing with your children on New Year’s Eve. Some fun activities include playing with sparklers outside, making New Year’s Eve cupcakes, playing a family board game, making homemade noisemakers/poppers, decorating New Year’s Eve hats, etc.
  • Next, put one slip of paper (each with an activity on it) into each balloon.
  • Blow up the balloons, and with a permanent marker, write a time on each balloon (leading up to midnight). For example, if you start the activities at 6:00 pm and you have 12 balloons, then you’ll want to write 1/2 hour increments on each balloon.
  • When the time on the balloon arrives, have the kids pop the balloon and read the activity. They’ll love the surprises, and they’ll be able to stay up until the ball drops if they’re kept busy!

New Year’s Eve Let’s Make a Deal!
 
Ingredients
  • Three wrapped boxes that can open
  • Small gifts/prizes
  • Trivia questions on slips of paper
  • Challenges on slips of paper
To Play
  • First, number each of the wrapped boxes from 1-3. Then, put a small prize in each box. (Dollar store candy and toys would work well.)
  • Set the boxes in front of the players, and choose one child to go first. Read a trivia question, which the child must answer. (Make sure the questions are age appropriate. Questions about kids’ TV shows would be fun.)
  • If the child answers correctly, they must choose a box. After choosing a box, give the player a clue about the prize inside. The player must then decide if they want the prize or want to choose a different box. If the player decides to stay with their first choice, they get the prize from the first box.
  • If the player chooses a different box, have them pick a Challenge paper from a hat. Some interesting challenges might include hopping on one foot for 15 seconds, singing the National Anthem, making animal noises, etc. (The funnier the better!) Once they complete a challenge, they get to choose another box and win the prize.
  • Allow each child to participate (refilling the boxes with prizes as you go).

New Year’s Eve Time Capsule
 
Ingredients
  • A shoebox covered in craft paper
  • Decorating Supplies: Sequins, buttons, markers, stickers, etc.
  • Lined Paper
  • Writing Utensils
To Play
  • Create a time capsule with your children which they open on next year’s New Year’s Eve! On lined paper, have the kiddos address letters to themselves. They can tell their future selves about any resolutions they might have, what they hope to do that year, advice, etc.
  • After writing their letters, have them decorate it with markers, stickers, etc. Allow them to decorate the shoebox, which will be the time capsule
  • Put the letters in the box, and the box in a dry place. Wait a year, and open it up the following New Year’s Eve. Your kids will love to see how far they’ve come in 365 days!

Marble Race
 
Ingredients
  • Cardboard Paper Towel Rolls (1 for every 2 players)
  • Marbles
To Play
  • Cut cardboard paper towel rolls in half to create a “trough.” Give each player a trough, and have all the players organize in a line.
  • Place a large marble in the first person’s paper towel roll. That person must now transfer the marble from their roll to the next one in the line, and run to the end of the line.
  • This continues until the marble is dropped. The person who drops the marble is out, and the last player standing wins!

Are You a Psychic?
 
Ingredients
  • Paper and writing utensil
  • A large room
To Play
  • Get a group of players together and pick an “It” person. On a piece of paper, this person must write down 15 items they see in a room.
  • The other players now get to play the “psychic.” Players choose 15 items from the room that they think are on the list.
  • Players have to carry the items to the “It,” and for each item they guess correctly, they get a point. The player with the most points after one minute wins! (Make sure to have the kiddos put everything back where it was after each round.)

Chopstick Pass
 
Ingredients
  • Paper plate
  • Chopsticks
  • Walnut
  • Acorn
  • Cranberry
  • Bean
  • Bead
To Play
  • Have players sit in a circle, and give each one a pair of chopsticks. Give one person in the circle a plate with an acorn, walnut, cranberry, bean, and bead on it.
  • The object of the game is for the first person to pick up each item with chopsticks and pass it on to the next person, who passes it on to the next person, and so on. (No hands allowed! Only chopsticks!)
  • The items must make it all the way around the circle and back onto the plate without being dropped. If an item is dropped, then it has to start back at the beginning.
  • The twist? Players have only 5 minutes to do this! Good luck! (For children who can’t handle chopsticks, have them use spoons instead.)

Find the Cherry
 
Ingredients
  • Disposable Bowls
  • Maraschino Cherries
  • Whipped Cream
To Play
  • Before the game, put one cherry in each disposable bowl, and fill the bowl with whipped cream, covering the cherry.
  • Have players sit at a table, and put a bowl in front of each one.
  • Without using their hands, they must find the cherry in the bowl. The first to find it wins! This messy game is great for pictures!

Pick Up the Prize
 
Ingredients
  • Small Prizes (dollar store toys work well)
To Play
  • Players must gather in a circle facing outwards and link arms. Next, put a prize in the center of the circle.
  • The object of the game is for the players to try to grab the prize. They can use their hands, but they are not allowed to unlink their arms.
  • If a player unlinks arms, then they are out, and have to wait to play until the next round. The person to grab the prize wins and gets to keep it!

Guess Who (With Spoons!)
 
Ingredients
  • Two Wooden Spoons
  • Chair
  • Blindfold
To Play
  • Have players gather in a circle, and choose an “It” who must sit in a chair in the center.
  • Blindfold the “It” and give him or her two wooden spoons.
  • Choose someone from the outside of the circle to stand in front of the “It.” Give the “It” 30 seconds to use the two wooden spoons to identify the person. (Expect some giggles to give identities away!)
  • After 30 seconds, the “It” must guess, and if the “It” guesses incorrectly, another person is chosen from the circle and the “It” must try again. If the “It” guesses correctly, that person becomes the new “It”.

Find Some Friends
 
Ingredients
  • Group of 15-20 kids
To Play
  • This game works best with larger numbers. Have players gather in an open space.
  • Then, have an adult call out a number less than half the number of players. For example, if there are 15 players, the adult would call out 6 or 7. It would also work to call out smaller group numbers. If there are 15 players, the adult might call out 4. (There would 3 leftover players.)
  • The children must then lock hands in a group with the same number the adult called.
  • Any leftover players are out for the round. The game continues until there are only two players left, who both win!
 
Some other fun ideas that will keep the kids busy for hours until the clock strikes midnight are to have them strike a piñata, make New Year's resolutions (and guess whose resolutions they are), decorate cookies, and have a huge indoor treasure hunt with clues. Happy New Year from everyone at Party411.com!