If you’re excited about ringing in 2017 but not sure you can make it to midnight, there are plenty of family-friendly events going on during the day in the Granite State to celebrate before the sun goes down.
One of them is the annual Noon Year’s Eve at the Currier Museum of Art in Manchester, which is happening on Saturday, Dec. 31, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The event features food, face-painting, music, dancing and even some magic tricks before culminating with a special “balloon drop” welcoming the new year a few hours early.
“The museum is pretty much taken over by kids and their parents, so that’s always fun for us,” said Steve Konick, director of PR and marketing at Currier, adding that the museum will be closed to the public for the duration of Noon Year’s Eve. “This is our fifth year doing it, and every year the population gets bigger and bigger.”
In fact, the event has become one of the largest family-friendly New Year’s Eve events in northern New England, according to Konick. Around 500 tickets are expected to be sold for this year’s event.
“Five hundred has become a sort of sweet spot in terms of number, because it allows a better chance for more kids to get to the grand finale, and also for fewer lines to get into different activities,” he said.
The museum will provide opportunities to make your own noisemakers, as well as a photo booth area where you can make your own hats, Konick said. Other activities will include a set of three separate half-hour-long magic shows by Boston-based magician David Hall alternating with performances by John Chouinard of the Ted Herbert Music School.
At 2 p.m., the party will gather in the Winter Garden Cafe for the main event: the balloon drop and bubble wrap stomp.
“[The cafe] gets transformed into a room with giant sheets of bubble wrap taped down to the floor, and we do a big countdown and all the kids just stream down and stomp down on the bubble wrap as the balloons drop, like fireworks,” Konick said.
Tickets to Noon Year’s Eve will be available at currier.org until the night before, Konick said. The museum will reopen to the public on Jan. 2.