While it’s fun to go out for New Year’s Eve, too many partiers make the roads dangerous. So consider a fun option instead – a progressive party in your neighborhood to recognize the year’s change.
Living in Arizona we actually have two time choices to celebrate the transition: we can stick with midnight or take advantage of the ball dropping in Times Square at 10 p.m. our time to wrap up the evening early. This is particularly useful if you are including children.
To plan the evening, recruit hosts that live close by. Include your street or cul-de-sac and maybe one or two other adjoining blocks. For the event itself, if you’re wrapping up at 10, you could start at 7 p.m. Plan to stay at each house about 45 minutes. The first two homes with times of 7 to 7:45 p.m. and 7:45 to 8:30 p.m. could each offer a signature appetizer and beverage. 8:30 to 9:45 might be dessert, and the 9:45 home could feature champagne and sparkling cider while everyone counts down the ball dropping.
To make the evening extra festive, add noisemakers and hats at various homes. Your group could also sing a chorus of “Auld Lang Syne” as midnight approaches. Print some copies of the song’s lyrics so everyone can join in together.
After the party is over, you may find that neighbors are friendlier since they’ve had a chance to get to know each other better. It also gives new neighbors a chance to get acquainted. This could become an annual event on your block and lead to other social events in your neighborhood.
For many children, New Year’s Eve may seem like a mysterious adult event that happens while they’re asleep. But you can make the change to 2014 something special for your children without the champagne, and even without staying up until Midnight. Check out these ideas.
Take advantage of time differences. If you live in Central, Mountain or Pacific Time, you can have your children celebrate an earlier midnight – there will be a live webcast of the ball dropping in Times Square at this link, so you can watch the year change with your children and still get them to bed well before midnight.
Make some noise. Party and discount stores are ready for the New Year with noisemakers, streamers and confetti. Have a dress rehearsal before midnight. You can split the children into two groups, with the adults determining which group is the loudest or most enthusiastic. This gives the kids a chance to be extra noisy and energetic several times before 2014 hits.
Out with the old and in with the new. Have everyone write down all of the things that happened in 2013 that they want to forget, and burn them in a fireplace, fire pit, or fire-safe container. Then have everyone write down lists of what they want in 2014. They could tie their lists to helium balloons and release them just before the New Year.
Write predictions. Have everyone write down their predictions for themselves and others in 2014. Encourage silliness. Read the notes aloud, and then save them to read next New Year’s Eve. This could become a fun tradition for family and friends.
However you decide to celebrate, it will be more enjoyable if you include everyone in the family. And at Fulton Homes we all hope you and yours have a terrific 2014!