John and I have been in Iowa to ring in the last three years and 2011 will be no exception. The kids get their own bottle of sparkling apple juice, party favours abound, and the television is flipped from network to network waiting for that iconic ball to drop. Vancouver hasn’t had a major kid-friendly event for New Year’s Eve in several years however I found a few activities around the region in case you’d like to get out with the family.
Cloverdale is hosting a Winter Ice Palace this month and will be open from 11:00am until 4:00pm on New Year’s Eve.
Centennial Arena in White Rock is offering a Countdown to 2011 skating event. The arena is located at 14600 North Bluff Road and family skate times are 12:30pm – 2:30pm (I have yet to confirm the special event skate times if they are different from the family skate).
The Renfrew Park Community Centre is hosting a New Year’s Eve Dinner and Dance from 6:00pm on December 31st. Located at 2929 East 22nd Avenue, Vancouver this event is family-friendly and will include party favours, snacks, full dinner, door prizes, and champagne at midnight. Call Cheryl at (604) 257-8388 to book your spot.
Families can also enjoy Christmas activities that they may have missed earlier in the month such as Bright Nights in Stanley Park.
Robson Square will host ice skating and a New Year’s Eve celebration from 5:00pm until 9:00pm December 31st. There will be live entertainment and an early countdown for the kids.
On New Year’s Day the Bill Copeland Sports Centre (3676 Kensington) will host a special family skate from 5:00pm until 8:00pm (regular rates and admission apply).
While it’s not exactly on New Year’s Eve, New Westminster is hosting the Winter Festival of Fun on December 29th. Starting at 10:30am, children age 5-10 can check out the festivities at the public library at 716 6th Avenue.
The Dundarave Festival of Lights is on now until January 7th. Check out a forest of decorated trees with the family on New Years Eve with some hot chocolate in-hand.
Home of the only First Night event I could find, Whistler’s Village Square and Conference Centre will host entertainment for the entire family on December 31st. Entry fees are $15 adults/ $8 – 12 years and under, or evening fee of $20 adult and $10 â€“ 12 and under, 2 years and under are free. This is a no-alcohol event with an early countdown for the kids at 9:30pm and fireworks.
Should you know of any other family-friendly New Year’s Eve events, please feel free to drop a note in the comments.
Update December 2011: If you’re looking for the 2011-2012 listing you can find it here.