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Family-friendly events for New Year's Eve

Now that you’ve gotten your Christmas shopping under control, perhaps it’s time to think about ringing in the New Year. There are some pretty good, kid-friendly options.

First Night Buffalo has been going strong for 27 years. The drug and alcohol free New Year’s Eve celebration takes place from 5 to 10 p.m. Dec. 31 at the Buffalo Niagara Convention Center (153 Franklin St.). Pre-sale tickets for the carnival-like party can be purchased at any Wegmans location for $10; tickets are $12 at the door. Children younger than 2 get in free.

The ticket includes carnival rides, music, bounce houses, jugglers and much more. There is a balloon drop at 9:45 p.m. to end the night of fun.

Old Falls Street Family Fun runs from 6 to 10 p.m. You’ll find a dance floor, DJ, party hats, a countdown to the ball drop – which is at 10 p.m. – giant inflatable obstacle courses, face painting, balloon artists and arts and crafts.

Food concessions and non-alcoholic beverages will be available for purchase. Tickets are $4 each. Kids under 4 are free. The fun is at the Conference and Event Center at 101 Old Falls St.

If you’re looking to start a new tradition, consider the Hyatt Regency Buffalo. The Hyatt is hosting two family-friendly dinners: an adult buffet and kids buffet from 3:30 to 8:30 p.m. Or a second, fancier dinner from 5:30 to 11 p.m. where you’ll enjoy a three-course meal which includes a champagne toast for adults and sparkling cider for the kids. It’s perfect for older kids looking to celebrate in style.

Your family can check out the life-sized gingerbread house and take in the gorgeous old holiday window displays from AM&As. The fully enclosed glass atrium might give you the best and warmest seat in town to watch the ball drop and fireworks display at midnight.

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