New Year's Eve and Day Celebrations
Say goodbye to 2016 and ring in 2017 in Grand Rapids, which offers everything from extravagant adult parties to fun-filled activities for kids and families. Here are some best bets.
Kids’ New Year’s Eve
Skate under the stars at downtown’s Rosa Parks Circle – it’s open until 9:45 pm on December 31.
Visit Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park at 11:15 am December 31 for an outdoor interactive discovery walk through the Children’s Garden – or stop by anytime between 9am and 5pm to tour the Christmas and Holiday Traditions Around the World exhibition.
Bundle up for a horse-drawn carriage ride through downtown Grand Rapids – both Classic Carriages and Common Gentry Carriage Co. hitch up the horses at 7pm on New Year’s Eve.
Book a live, interactive puzzle game at Escape Michigan – you and your team will race against the clock to discover hidden clues and challenges.
Let the kids play their way into 2017 with New Year’s Early Eve at Grand Rapids Children’s Museum – it takes place from 6pm to 8pm.
Grand Rapids Public Museum closes at 5pm on December 31 – plenty of time to catch three fun and fascinating exhibitions: Merry, Christmas, Charlie Brown; Grand Fish, Grand River; and Whales: Giants of the Deep.
Create a sculpture or holiday bauble during Drop-In Studio: Material Metamorphosis, offered from 1pm to 4pm at Grand Rapids Art Museum.
Count down to 2017 with an all-you-can-eat buffet, unlimited games and party favors for all at Craig’s Cruisers. Choose the 4pm to 8pm or 9pm to 1am session.
Cheer on the Grand Rapids Griffins as they battle the Rockford IceHogs – the game starts at 6pm and is followed by an indoor fireworks show and open skating.
Adult New Year’s Eve
Get some inspiration for your New Year’s Eve Party wear at the Iris Van Herpen: Transforming Fashion exhibit at Grand Rapids Art Museum.
Take a cooking class at The Local Epicurean, which specializes in Italian cuisine. Four sessions are offered on December 31.
Take a brewery tour to learn how the beers (or hard cider) you might be consuming on New Year’s Eve are made. Grand Rapids Beer Tours offers four separate tours of multiple area breweries on December 31 – or you can tour these individual sites:
• 57 Brewpub & Bistro
• B.O.B.’s Brewery
• Brewery Vivant
• Cedar Springs Brewing Company
• Cellar Brewing Company
• Founders Brewing Co.
• Grand Rapids Brewing Company
• Gravel Bottom Craft Brewery & Supply Store
• Hideout Brewing
• Pike 51 Brewery
• Railtown Brewing
• Vander Mill Cider
Party like it’s 1999 at the Pyramid Scheme’s Back to the ‘90s New Year’s Eve bash.
Spend New Year’s Eve at The B.O.B., complete with four stages of live entertainment, dining options at three award winning restaurants, stand-up comedy and two dance floors.
Put some Irish into your new year at Quinn & Tuites Irish Pub, which welcomes roots band The JukeJoint Handmedowns.
Dance the night away at The Orbit Room, featuring a laser light show plus great DJs and live bands playing a mix of old school, hip hop and top 40.
Greet the new year with plenty of belly laughs – see comedian Mike E. Winfield at Dr. Grins Comedy Club.
Get tickets to Beats & Bubbly 2016 at The Intersection and party to live DJs all night long.
Enjoy dinner and drinks, a main-floor piano show and second-floor dancing to the tunes of a live DJ at Mojo’s Dueling Piano Bar and Restaurant.
Welcome the new year with the funky rock and roll of a favorite local band, Desmond Jones, plus other surprise guests at the Tip-Top Deluxe Bar & Grill.
Kick it up country-style with the band Stolen Horses at the Back Forty Saloon’s New Year’ Eve celebration.
Join in the city’s most epic New Year’s Eve experience – The Ballroom Bashes, which spans three downtown hotels, all connected by skywalk. Party in four glamorous hotel ballrooms, each with a distinct theme and energy, along with a dozen restaurants and bars.
Adult New Year’s Day
Start the new year by pampering yourself with a Brew & Renew Spa Package at JW Marriott Grand Rapids.
Work off the party pounds on cross-country ski trails around town.
Make a reservation for a horse-drawn sleigh ride through the beautiful Fruit Ridge region.
Scoop up post-holiday bargains at area shopping destinations.