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Family-Friendly New Year’s Celebrations

Ring in 2014 with the whole family in Philadelphia

Philadelphia is the perfect destination for families searching for kid-friendly New Year’s Eve celebrations.

Revelers of all ages can ring in 2014 with a “Countdown to Noon” at the Please Touch Museum, a special “Square Drop” at Franklin Square or party with the fishes at Adventure Aquarium before the explosive fireworks show at Penn’s Landing at 6 p.m.

Check out more of our top family-friendly celebrations, below:

Blue Cross RiverRink & Waterfront Winterfest

Details: Columbus Boulevard & Market Street | (215) 925-RINK

Winter sports enthusiasts celebrate at the Blue Cross RiverRink’s New Year’s Eve Parties on Ice, a family-friendly affair that boasts one of the best views of the city’s breathtaking fireworks displays over the Delaware River. Skaters can catch one of two sparkling shows during the early (5-7 p.m.) and late (11 p.m.-1 a.m.) parties complete with snacks, beverages, live entertainment and party favors. Be sure to check out the Waterfront Winterfest, a pop-up holiday village at Penn’s Landing. Tickets for the New Year’s Parties on Ice cost $35 and can be purchased online here.

Square Drop at Franklin Square

Details: 6th and Race Streets | (215) 629-4026

Franklin Square is celebrating New Year’s Eve with a FREE, kid-friendly “Square Drop” in lieu of the famous ball. Take a spin on the Philadelphia Park Liberty Carousel, putt through the Liberty Bell at Philly Mini Golf, enjoy SquareBurger’s hearty winter menu and celebrate with a Kids Dance Party in the indoor pavilion before watching the Penn’s Landing’s Fireworks early show at 6 p.m. The fun continues with the the final Electrical Spectacle Holiday Light Show of the year at 8 p.m.

Countdown to Noon at the Please Touch Museum

Details: 4231 Avenue of the Republic | (215) 581-3181

Ring in 2014 with a lunchtime celebration at the Please Touch Museum’s Countdown 2 Noon® on December 31 with King Countdown, the museum’s official Marshal of the New Year, and enjoy music and fun activities at noon and 1 p.m.

Independence Seaport Museum

Details: Penn’s Landing, Columbus Boulevard at Walnut Street | (215) 413-8655

A maritime New Year’s Eve celebration is on deck at the Independence Seaport Museum along the Philadelphia waterfront. The Seaport Museum will be open late on New Year’s Eve, allowing families to celebrate from 4-7 p.m. Grab a complimentary party hat and noisemaker before heading outside for a sparkling cider toast to the New Year during the fireworks spectacular at 6 p.m. Best of all, the festivities are included with your admission to the museum.

Hyatt Regency Philadelphia at Penn’s Landing

Details: 201 S. Christopher Columbus Blvd. | (215) 928-1234

The Hyatt Regency Philadelphia at Penn’s Landing is hosting an incredible all-ages celebrations to celebrate 2014. Kids and adults can enjoy a family buffet, face painting, activities and more before heading to Keatings’s River Grill for a front-row view of the New Year’s Eve Fireworks on the Delaware River at 6 p.m. and an explosion of desserts and sweets. Guests will receive free parking from 4-7 p.m. at the Hyatt Regency Garage. For more information and a complete menu, click here.

Spirit of Philadelphia

Details: 401 S. Columbus Boulevard | (866) 455-3866

Those in the mood to celebrate the New Year on the open water can set sail on the Spirit of Philadelphia. Families can enjoy an early cruise aboard the Spirit of Philadelphia from 4:30-6:30 p.m. Celebrate with a soda and juice bar, dinner buffed, dancing and spectacular views of the 6 p.m. fireworks on the Delaware River. Tickets from $99.90 per adult; $59.90 for children 3-12. Make your reservations online here.

New Year’s Eve Family Fireworks Cruise

Details: 401 North Columbus Blvd | (215) 629-8687

All aboard The Ben Franklin Yacht for a family-friendly New Year’s Eve Cruise on the Delaware River. Revelers of all ages can enjoy tasty treats, beverages for all ages, and three warm levels to watch the New Year’s Eve Fireworks on the Delaware River at 6 p.m. Tickets cost $58 for adults, $33 for children (ages 3-12). Make your reservations online here.

Dave & Buster’s

Details: 325 N. Columbus Boulevard | (215) 413-1951

Game your way into 2014 at Dave & Busters on the Delaware River Waterfront. Bring the family for a fun night of games, dinner and entertainment before getting a front row seat for the early fireworks show at 6 p.m. ($50 per person — includes $40 Power Card; $25 per person without Power Card). Buy tickets in advance online here.

Adventure Aquarium

Details: 1 Riverside Drive, Camden, NJ | (856) 365-3300

Party with the fishes at Adventure Aquarium’s second annual New Year’s Eve Splash. Families can celebrate the New Year with the Aquarium’s shark mascot Gill while enjoying a special New Year’s Eve “Countdown” Dance Party from 5-8:30 p.m. Guests also get exclusive access to the entire aquarium, family-friendly music and activities, up-close animal encounters and a free gift for children under 12. Head out on to the Aquarium’s Waterfront promenade for a spectacular view of the New Year’s Eve fireworks at 6 p.m. Tickets cost $30 for adults, $25 for children 2-12 (children under two get in FREE) and can be purchased online here.

Battleship New Jersey

Details: 62 Battleship Place | (856) 966-1652

Celebrate the New Year from the decks of the Battleship New Jersey, the nation’s largest battleship. Featuring spectacular views of the New Year’s Eve Fireworks at 6 p.m. and midnight, the Battleship New Jersey is ringing in the New Year with music, dancing, food and beverages for just a $10 donation per person. Guests can also enter for a chance to fire the Battleship’s five-inch portside gun after each fireworks show! Call 1-866-877-6262 ext. 107 or visit the Battleship New Jersey ticket office for advance tickets.

Philadelphia Orchestra New Year’s Eve Celebration

The Philadelphia Orchestra is saying goodbye to 2013 and hello to 2014 with the timeless music of Strauss. Grammy® Award-winning guest conductor Bramwell Tovy leads the New Year’s Eve concert starting at 7:30 p.m., giving you plenty of time to countdown to midnight with your loved ones.

Toast with a Ghost at the Powel House

Details: 244 S. 3rd St. | (215) 413-1997

Looking for something a little different this New Year’s Eve? Celebrate with past revelers at the historic Powel House during the fourth annual New Year’s Eve Ghost Tour on December 31. Take a candlelight tour of the Colonial-era home before enjoying a champagne (or sparkling cider) “Toast with a Ghost.” Tours leave every hour from 7-11 p.m. and a portion of the proceeds benefit the Philadelphia Society for the Preservation of Landmarks. Reserve your tickets here.

New Year’s Eve at Longwood Gardens

Details: 1001 Longwood Road, Kennett Square | (610) 388-1000

Enjoy a musical celebration to end the year at Longwood Gardens. The picturesque gardens will be filled with the sounds of the season with special New Year’s Eve performances from 3-9 p.m. Advance reservations are required. Click here for more information.

The Count’s Countdown to New Year’s Celebration at Sesame Place

Details: 100 Sesame Road Langhorne, PA | (866) GO-4-ELMO (866-464-3566)

Join the Count and all of his furry friends as they count down to the New Year at Sesame Place! Families can enjoy a celebratory meal and get photographs with all of their Sesame Street friends as they get set to ring in 2014. Reserve your spot online here.

For fireworks, Mummers and more holiday fun, check out our Guide to New Year’s in Philadelphia

View New Year’s in Philadelphia

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