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2023 Best Family Friendly New Year’s Eve Celebrations in Southern California

Updated for 2023

Are you looking for a family-friendly New Year’s Eve Celebration to take your kiddos to this year?  If so, then SoCal Field Trips got you covered with the Best Family Friendly New Year’s Eve Celebrations in Southern California and beyond!  

In fact, if you attend one of these events in person you might just be able to tuck your children in before the ball drops at midnight in Times Square.  Please visit each individual celebration’s website for dates, times, pricing and locations.

Are you looking for a New Year's Eve celebration that your entire family can attend together? Then check out this list of the Best Family Friendly New Year's Eve Celebrations in Southern California! In fact, if you attend one of these events, you might just be able to tuck your children in before the ball drops at midnight in Times Square!
2023 New Year’s Eve Celebrations in Los Angeles

Grand Park N.Y.E.L.A, Downtown Los Angeles, 12/31 @ 8:00 pm 

The West Coast’s largest free New Year’s Eve event is back! With the park’s signature 3D countdown art show projected onto L.A.’s iconic City Hall leads revelers into 2024 and La Doña and La Verdad Band topping off the highly-anticipated New Year’s Eve celebration!

Plus, bring the appetite for delicious foods from 30 of LA’s Favorite Food trucks.

Alcohol is not permitted and will not be sold at Gloria Molina Grand Park.  The event will happen rain or shine. We encourage all our guests to watch the weather reports, and, if necessary come prepared for inclement weather, bringing the appropriate rain gear to stay warm and dry while enjoying all of the event’s amenities. Please note that umbrellas are prohibited in the park.

Aquarium of the Pacific New Year's Eve Party

Dive into 2024 at the Aquarium of the Pacific’s New Year’s Eve Night Dive! Start the new year with the fish as you boogie to the tunes of Loud as Funk playing live in the Great Hall, DJs spinning in the galleries, a silent disco, and karaoke- all leading up to the confetti countdown at midnight!

Snap a pic in the roaming photo booth, grab a drink from the cash bars, or enjoy a tasty meal in Café Scuba before visiting with all your favorite animals. Plus, you never know what surprises are in store at Night Dive!

Doors open at 8:00 p.m., countdown is at midnight (obviously), but the party won’t stop until 1:00 a.m. Dress to the nines or come causal- you do you! Just get ready to ring in 2024 at one of the biggest parties in town!

Noon Year’s Eve, Discovery Cube LA, 12/31 @ 12:00 pm and 3:00 pm

This December 31st, take the entire family to Discovery Cube Los Angeles for the popular Noon Year’s Eve event!  The event features sip and toast apple cider and ginger ale, access to your favorite science exhibits and a mega balloon drop at NOON and 3:00 pm.  Guests will be able to make their very own Sparkler fireworks to help ring in the New Year!  There will be a dance floor with live music DJ, and much more fun!

Tickets are $5 for Members and $22 for Non-Members ($15 General Admission + $7 Non-Member ticket price).

Live Stream Times Square Ball Drop, New York, 12/31 @ 6:00 pm EST (Virtual)

The first New Year’s Eve Ball lowering celebration atop One Times Square was in 1907.  This proud tradition is now a universal symbol of the New Year and is watched by millions around the world.  You and your family can enjoy a commercial-free, webcast coverage of the festivities leading up to the Ball Drop starting at 6 p.m. (EST).

New Year's Parties for Kids in Los Angeles

Annual New Year’s Eve Musical Revue, Santa Monica Playhouse, Santa Monica, 12/31 @ 7:00 pm (for families) & 10:30 pm

Champagne and sparkling juice and delightful sweets and savories accompany the 54thanniversary of this rousing, family-friendly Rudie-DeCarlo in-person multi-media New Year’s event with live Playhouse artists and special guests streaming from around the globe joining in the singing, dancing, humor and other delights culled from 6 decades of audience favorite Santa Monica Playhouse productions.

From finger-snapping 40s jazz to foot-stompin’ country rock, Jewish patter songs to romantic ballads, this show has it all! Add champagne, sparkling apple juice, hats, tiaras, noisemakers, streamers and surprises and you have a not-to-be-missed New Year’s Eve celebration.

LA Zoo New Year's Eve Celebration

LA Zoo’s Family New Year’s Eve Party, Los Angeles, 12/31 @ 6:00 – 10:00 pm

Attend the annal LA Zoo Family New Year’s Eve Party!  Celebrate the new year in style with express entry to the LA Zoo Lights, a dinner buffet that includes soft drinks and dessert, a carousel ride, games, dance party, and live broadcast of the Times Square ball drop.  Raise a toast to the new year with complimentary champagne for adults (21+) and sparkling apple cider for kids.  After the party, families are welcome to enjoy L.A. Zoo Lights until closing. Fun for all ages!

New Year's Eve Celebrations in LA

Old Town Music Hall New Year’s Eve, Los Angeles, 12/31 @ 9:00 pm – 12:00 am

Come celebrate the new year with your friends at Old Town Music Hall! Hosted by renowned theatre organist/pianist Mark Herman, the evening will feature Vitaphone musical shorts of the 1920s and rarely seen comedy shorts from both Buster Keaton and Laurel and Hardy. Complimentary desserts will be served during intermission. Join us as we ring in our 56th year! For ages 10 and up. Reservations required.

New Year’s Eve Family Fireworks Cruise, Rainbow Harbor, Long Beach, 12/31 @ 7:30 pm – 9:00 pm

Join us on New Year’s Eve for a night of family fun and fireworks! Harbor Breeze Cruises is hosting a special evening lights and fireworks cruise on the waters of Long Beach Harbor. Boarding at 7:30 pm you will have a narrated cruise to view Long Beach harbor lit up at night. Observe the awe-inspiring firework displays performed at 9:00pm.

Long Beach New Year's Celebration

New Year’s Eve at the Waterfront, Shoreline Village, Long Beach (EVENT TBD)

This free family-friendly celebration takes place from 5:00 to 10:00 pm at Rainbow Harbor.  There will be live music, a photo booth, face painting, interactive games, arts & crafts, food, jugglers and stilt-walkers.  Then at 9 p.m., the sky will light up for an East Coast countdown with a fireworks spectacular from Rainbow Harbor’s lighthouse peninsula!

New Year’s Eve Glow PartyBurton Chace ParkMarina del Rey, 12/31 @ 7:00 pm – Midnight (EVENT TBD)

Join us for a Glow Party at 7 pm with fun activities for the whole family!  Featuring Live DJs, dance music, dancers, circuit breaker robot, face painting, bubbles, photo booth, food trucks and more.  At 8:59 p.m, there will be 30-second countdown and view of the Times Square ball drop followed by an amazing 10-minute fireworks display.  Then at 11:59 pm, there will be another 30-second countdown to celebrate New Year’s Eve in Marina del Rey followed by another amazing ten-minute fireworks display.  Watch the spectacular fireworks from Burton Chace Park, Fisherman’s Village, or the many waterfront restaurants in Marina del Rey!

EVE at Universal Studios Hollywood, Hollywood, 12/31 @ 10:00 am – 1/1 at 2:00 am

Be part of Hollywood’s biggest New Year’s Eve celebration at Universal Studios Hollywood’s EVE event!  Fill your day with heart-pounding rides and attractions like Jurassic World, then party til 2am with music, dancing, photo-ops and a special midnight countdown celebration with fireworks.

New Year’s Eve Celebrations in Orange County

Knott’s New Year’s Eve Celebration, Buena Park, 12/31/23 @ 10:00 am – 1/1/24 @ 1:00 am

The countdown to the New Year is on at Knott’s Merry Farm with special fireworks, live entertainment, and special extended hours for the one-night event. Guests have a chance to say goodbye to the final moments of 2023 at Knott’s as the park celebrates with memorable festivities including Merry Farm seasonal performances throughout the day on December 31st.  The enchanting Knott’s New Year’s Eve celebration gives guests front row seats to the final event of the year as the park rings in 2024 with a park wide-party unlike any other and everyone is invited.

The New Year’s celebration features entertaining activities for the whole family including a family friendly comedian, live bands, swing dancing and more. Guest are invited to count down the final moments of 2023 with festive music, party hats and noisemakers making this night extra special. The spectacular firework celebration sets the skies above Knott’s ablaze at the stroke of midnight as colorful fireworks light the start of the New Year. The nighttime extravaganza offers a stress-free night perfect for family and friends to come together and create new memories by starting a new tradition by celebrating the New Year ’s Eve at Knott’s.  Knott’s Berry Farm is open from 10:00 am – 1:00 am and the New Year’s Eve Celebration is included with regular daytime admission.

Happy Noon Year’s Eve, Heritage Park Library, Irvine, 12/31 @ 11:00 am – 12:30 pm

Celebrate the new year at the library with free crafts, activities, treats, and a countdown to noon with a balloon drop!

New Year's Eve Pretend City

Pretend City’s Noon Year’s Confetti Countdown, Irvine, 12/31 @ 9:00 am – 3:00 pm 

Twas’ the day before New Year’s and all through the city the citizens are stirring and buzzing about!  With sparkling streamers, blowouts, noise makers, and confetti that will make this the party of all parties!  Countdown around the world and welcome the new year early with us!  Don’t miss out and secure your ticket for the afternoon session quickly before they sell out and join the fun!

9:30a (Member’s Countdown) Thailand & Laos celebrate the new year!
12 pm Pakistan celebrates the new year!
3 pm Bucharest, Romania celebrates the new year!


First Night Fullerton New Year’s Eve Party, Fullerton, 12/31 @ 7:00 pm – 12:00 am 

The City of Fullerton is thrilled to announce the return of its much-anticipated annual New Year’s Eve celebration, First Night, on Sunday, December 31, 2023, from 7:00pm – Midnight at the Downtown Fullerton Plaza located at 125 E. Wilshire Avenue, offering a spectacular celebration for the entire community. Admission to this event is free, ensuring that everyone can participate in this momentous occasion.

As the clock ticks down to midnight, First Night promises to captivate attendees with a vibrant extravaganza filled with live entertainment, dazzling fireworks, delectable cuisines, and a myriad of family-friendly activities. Taking place in charming Downtown Fullerton, this alcohol-free event aims to create lasting memories and ring in the New Year with joyous spirits.

Event highlights include:

  • Live Music: Enjoy electrifying performances from local bands and talented artists on multiple stages throughout the festival grounds. From classic rock to the blues and everything in-between, there’s something for every musical taste.
  • Culinary Delights: Savor an array of delicious food and beverage options from gourmet food trucks and local vendors offering a diverse selection of cuisines to tantalize your taste buds.
  • Family Fun Zone: Delight in an assortment of activities designed for all ages, including face painting, balloon and character artists, stilt walkers, a kids lane with interactive games, and much more. Let the little ones revel in the festive atmosphere with dedicated entertainment just for them.
  • Fireworks Extravaganza: Prepare to be awe-inspired as the night sky illuminates with a breathtaking fireworks display at midnight, marking the start of a promising New Year.

The Children’s Museum at La Habra New Year’s Noon Party, La Habra, 12/31 @ 12:00 pm

No longer will your little ones feel left out by the late night New Year’s festivities!  The whole family can celebrate the countdown to 12 o’clock noon!  Complete with hat making, face painting, dancing, and a balloon drop.  Advance reservations required.

Rancho Santa Margarita New Year’s Eve Celebration, Rancho Santa Margarita, 12/31 @ 5:00 – 9:00 pm

Celebrate the New Year with family and friends at the City of Rancho Santa Margarita’s annual New Year’s Eve bash! The event is open to the public; admission, games, and inflatable rides are FREE.

Featuring live entertainment by local artists, including the 5150’s rock band, attendees can purchase delicious food from Tacos n Co, and treats from Hyper House Sweets and Screamin’ Ice Cream.

There will be a variety of inflatables, and a train, for our younger guests to enjoy, and snowfall throughout the night!

New Year’s Eve Celebrations in San Diego

Family New Year's Eve Events San Diego

The Living Coast Discovery Center New Year’s Eve Family Party, San Diego, 12/31 @ 6:00 – 9:00 pm 

Slip into your favorite PJs and say Sweet Dreams to 2023 at our New Year’s Eve Pajama Party extravaganza!  Get ready to dance the night away at the silent disco, get up close with Living Coast animal ambassadors, capture the memories with our Flip Book photo booth, get artsy in the arts & crafts room, calm your sweet tooth in the cookie decorating room, and so much more!

It will be a night of comfort, creativity, and wild delights because who said PJs can’t be party attire? Here’s to a great start to 2024!  Pajamas are encouraged but not required!

New Year’s Day Brunch Cruise, San Diego , 1/1 @ 11:30 am – 2:00 pm

Celebrate the new year on the water with a New Year’s Day Premier Brunch Cruise in San Diego. While onboard, guests will enjoy a festive brunch buffet freshly prepared by our chef, full bar service, and City Cruises’ distinctive hospitality.

Start your new year in style with exceptional views of San Diego’s iconic skyline and waterfront on the Elizabeth River. Kids ages three and under are free.

Kids’ New Year’s Eve at Legoland, Carlsbad, 12/31 @ 6:00 pm

“Midnight” comes early for families at LEGOLAND California Resort, celebrating the New Year together without missing their bedtimes. LEGOLAND California re-creates the Times Square ball drop with a giant LEGO brick falling 22 feet in the air at San Diego’s largest Kids’ New Year’s Eve Party!

Join in the festivities with party hats and special glasses for viewing fireworks. The party concludes just in time for our countdown at 6 p.m. with a fireworks display illuminating the sky and providing a great ending to an amazing year.  If you choose to stay over, room reservations are available at the LEGOLAND Castle Hotel.

Corvette Dinner Rockin’ New Year’s Eve, San Diego, 12/31 @ 9:00 pm – Midnight

Come on down to the Corvette Diner for our New Year’s celebration!  They’ll be starting the party early as you countdown to the ball drop in New York City, along with a Big Apple New Year’s Toast at 9pm.  They Diner DJ will be spinning tunes and a Balloon Artist will be there for the party.

New Year’s Eve Celebrations in the Inland Empire

New Year’s Eve Torchlight Parade at Snow Summit, Big Bear, 12/31 @ 7:00 pm – 10:00 pm 

Snow Summit will host the 59th annual Torchlight Parade on December 31, 2023. Admission to the parade viewing area is FREE and open to all ages with a live DJ.

Watch 200+ skiers and snowboarders light up the night as they make their way down the face of the mountain in the dark with torches to create a spellbinding spectacle of light before the (snow)ball drops. The event will begin around 7PM.

Make it a full day party. On New Year’s Eve, lifts will start spinning at 8:30AM. Bring the whole family and enjoy skiing/snowboarding, lessons, rentals, on-site dining, snow tubing at the Grizzly Ridge Tube Park, and more! Start planning your trip today. Come early and enjoy the snow!

New Year's Eve Grape Drop in Temecula

New Year’s Eve Grape Drop, Temecula, 12/31 @ 6:00 pm – 12:30 am

Ring in 2023 Temecula-style at the annual Grape Drop with two countdowns – east coast style (9 pm) and west coast style (midnight).  The celebration offers live bands and a free fun zone for kids (open 6 pm – 10 pm) with hat making, calligraphy art, face painting and a giant slide.  Patio heaters and some chairs provided.  Bring jackets to keep warm and extra chairs for extra seating.

Pennypickle’s Workshop New Year’s Event, Temecula, 12/31 @ 11:00 am – 12:30 pm

Celebrate the New Year Pennypickle-style… at noon instead of midnight! You won’t want to miss the Professor’s VERY special party for those too young to stay up late. Reserve your spots now – this event always sells out.  Call 951-308-6376 to pre-register.  Do it soon!

John’s Incredible Pizza, Riverside, Carson, and Montclair, 12/31 @ 10:00 am – 1:00 am

John‘s Incredible Pizza will celebrate New Year’s Eve with special hours and celebration packages.  Each John‘s location will be open from 10:00 p.m. – 1:00 a.m. on New Year’s Eve.  Last entry is 12 am.

What are your plans for New Year’s Eve?  Let us know in the comment section below.

Happy New Year’s!


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