The 7 Best New Year’s Eve Events for Families in New Mexico!

It’s time to say goodbye to the past year and ring in the new one. In New Mexico, we like to celebrate big. From entire street festivals to botanical garden celebrations, here’s how to make the most of the last day of the year with your family in New Mexico! 

1. Santa Fe, NM

The historic plaza lights up on New Year’s Eve at this annual celebration that rings in the new year. The festivities begin a 9:30 p.m. with a giant bonfire, followed by hot chocolate, food trucks and live music. At 11:45 p.m. the countdown begins to 2018 and on the stroke of midnight a New Year’s surprise will kick-off the new year. Be sure to stay until the end. This family-friendly event is alcohol free.

Annual Tree Lighting Celebration, Downtown, Santa Fe, NM @enchantment_aerials #nmoutside

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2. South Valley Library, Albuquerque, NM

On Saturday, Dec. 30, from 11:30 a.m. to 12:15 p.m., the South Valley Library in Albuquerque invites families to join them for a countdown to noon! Ringing in the “noon year” a day early is a great way to ensure that your children enjoy themselves but there is still time to celebrate with your own festivities on Dec. 31. Catered toward preschool and elementary-age children, this event will have games, snacks, and a balloon drop.  


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3. Las Cruces Chile Drop, Las Cruces, NM

What better way to celebrate New Year’s Eve in New Mexico then watching a giant chile, covered in hundreds of lights, drop from the sky? This annual Las Cruces party in the plaza brings the whole town out for a midnight chile cheer. Food trucks and live music keep the party festive. Admission is free, plus you get a party favor. 

Staying hot at #chiledrop ! #lascruces #newmexico

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4. Roswell Christmas Train, Roswell, NM

If you just can’t let go of that Christmas spirit, then hop aboard the Roswell Christmas Train on New Year’s Eve for a visit to Santa and Mrs. Claus one last time. You’ll see Christmas fairies, dancing polar bears and pass through a winter wonderland of glistening snow lit by twinkling lights. Admission price includes the train ticket and a warm cup of hot chocolate from Mrs. Claus’ kitchen. There’s no ball drop, but there are more than 100,000 lights to help welcome the new year.

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5. Santa Fe Botanical Garden, Santa Fe, NM

Head to the Santa Fe Botanical Garden for “GLOW – Kids’ New Year’s Eve Party!” GLOW is a special winter event in the garden where thousands of twinkling lights decorate the beautiful space. Held from 5-8 p.m. on Dec. 31, this event will feature activities for your children, festive beverages, plenty of entertainment, and of course, Santa Claus! Watch the “artful illumination of nature” at Santa Fe Botanical Garden.  

6. Red River, NM

At the heart of the Red River community is a focus on building community and creating traditions. This year that’s epitomized in the Old-fashioned New Year’s Eve Party happening at the Historic Red River Community House. It’s a night of family fun with food, games, all-age activities and a countdown to the moment every participant rings in the new year. Start practicing your best musical chairs strategy!

7. Explora, Albuquerque, NM

This hands-on, interactive children’s science museum is holding a special New Year’s Eve event for your little ones. Except, it will be held at noon instead of midnight! On Sunday, Dec. 31, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., visit Explora for their special Noon Year’s Eve Celebration. There will be a countdown and a balloon drop at noon! 

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