Skip to main content

Looking for cheap New Year's Eve options? Here are some wallet-friendly events

  • Author:
  • Updated:

If you don't have any plans for New Year's Eve yet, don't fret. We've done some digging for you and compiled a list of things to do – and they'll all be kind to your bank account.

Twin Cities Metro

Fireworks at the slopes – Buck Hill in Burnsville has special ski and tubing rates for New Year's Eve. Stay on the hills until midnight for $15 per lift ticket. There will be special shows throughout the day, glitter hairdos for kids, an airbag jump and more. The evening wraps up with fireworks at midnight.

Candlelight and Ice – Go to Richfield to escape the city. Any age is welcome to stroll through candlelit trails or go ice skating. There will be fires for roasting marshmallows and a warming house with activities. Admission is $4 per skater.

New Year's Eve Disco Ball – Get a blast from the '80s at Betty Danger's County Club in Minneapolis. For $15, you get in on the dance party, sleigh rides and champagne at midnight.

Check out more events at Minneapolis Happening, Eventbrite and City Pages. The Pioneer Press also has several things to do on or before New Year's.

And get free transportation: All Metro Transit buses and light rail trains are free from 6 p.m. through 3 a.m. Thursday into Friday. Learn more and plan your route here.

Northeast MN

Fireworks at Lutsen – Head out to Lutsen Mountains for fireworks and plenty of other fun events. There will be live music in the afternoon and a fireworks show at 8 p.m. Both are free and open to all ages. Anyone 21+ can hit the dance floor starting at 9:30 p.m. for $10.

New Year's Easy – Dress up and get out, but avoid the noise and hassle. The Zeit Arts Building in Duluth is hosting a night filled with board games, drink specials and a champagne toast. It's free of charge.

New Year's Party – If you're looking to dance, check out the New Year's Eve Party at Red Herring in Duluth. For $5-$10 dollars you can get into the multi-level party featuring DJs and live music.

Check out more events on Visit Duluth.

And don't worry about driving. Starting at 5 p.m., Duluth Transit Authority and Miller Lite are offering free rides on any regular-route bus service. Click here for details.

Central MN

Candlelight snowshoeing – Celebrate the end of a year with a peaceful walk through Lake Carlos State Park. Snowshoe along candlelit trails, then warm up inside or roast some marshmallows by the fire. It's $5 to enter the park and runs from 6 p.m to 8 p.m.

Annandale Ball Drop – Get a little taste of Times Square in Minnesota. Bring the entire family out for free to watch a lighted disco ball be lowered at midnight in downtown Annandale.

Winter Wonderland lights – Pack up the car and take a drive through a Winter Wonderland in Brainerd. Look at beautiful, animated light displays. Cost is $15 per vehicle.

Northwest MN

Skate in Fargo – Strap on the skates and hit the ice. Fargo's downtown rink is set to open on New Year's Eve. The 70x70-foot rink is free to skate on, but they don't have rentals so you'll have to bring your own gear. It will be open from 1 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Zoo Year's Eve – Celebrate the end of 2015 at Red River Zoo. This family friendly event is free of charge and runs from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. There will be free carousel rides and an hourly New Year's countdown.

Make a toast to 90s rock – The Aquarium in Fargo will host its annual NYE Party featuring 90s cover bands. This 21+ show will feature music from Weezer, Misfits, Rancid and more for $5. The show starts at 8 p.m. and includes a champagne toast at midnight.

Check out more events on Fargo Monthly.

Southern MN

Noon Years Eve – Can't stay up late? Ring in 2016 early at Minnesota Children's Museum in Rochester. There will be food, music, dancing, prizes and an early ball drop. Cost is $7 for members and $10 for nonmembers.

Kiwanis Holiday Lights – New Year's Eve is the last day to walk or take a drive through Sibley Park in Mankato and check out their beautiful light display. Its free to look, but donations are accepted. Stop by between 5 p.m. and 9 p.m.

Trolly Light Tour – Sign up for a two-hour tour to check out the best holiday lights in Rochester. Tours run from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. and it costs $15 per person.

Check out more events on Post Bulletin and Greater Mankato Events.

Next Up

Nicholas Kraus

Man sentenced for fatally striking woman during Uptown protest

Nicholas Kraus, 36, of St. Paul drove into a protest in Uptown last year, killing Deona Marie Knajdek.

Flickr - police lights squad siren - Edward Kimmel

Fleeing suspect crashes into vehicle in Woodbury, 2 injured

The crash occurred Friday afternoon after a pursuit with Woodbury police.

Screen Shot 2022-11-26 at 2.34.44 PM

Yes, that's MN native Jenny Taft in a State Farm commercial

Jenny Taft got her broadcasting career started in Minneapolis in 2011.

crime scene tape - police tape

23-year-old woman critical after shooting in Plymouth

A 23-year-old woman was shot Friday night in Plymouth.

white Christmas

2 MN towns among most 'magical' winter locations in the country

The list was compiled by Trips Discover and published earlier this month.

Screen Shot 2022-11-26 at 8.27.12 AM

St. Olaf football player charged after fatal crash in Chicago

The 18-year-old is accused of speeding and going the wrong way when he crashed into a vehicle that may have been attempting to flee police.

Screen Shot 2022-11-26 at 7.41.18 AM

Woman 34 weeks pregnant injured by drunk driver in Cottage Grove

The 49-year-old suspected of DUI was booked into jail around 1:30 a.m. Saturday.


2 dead, 5 injured in Thanksgiving Day crash near Alexandria

The crash involved two people from Alexandria and five from Bloomington.

Screen Shot 2022-11-25 at 6.44.11 PM

Lengthy standoff in Prior Lake ends late Friday night

The suspect allegedly assaulted an officer outside Kwik Trip, fled and broke into a home.

snow - 12-10-21 - Joe Nelson - 5

Accumulating snow possible in Twin Cities next week

The storm system could arrive in the Tuesday-Wednesday timeframe.

Target store snow

With Black Friday barely underway, Target reveals Cyber Monday deals

Plans for the two-day sale were revealed Friday morning.

Screen Shot 2022-11-25 at 9.37.25 AM

Man waves replica assault weapon at drivers in downtown Minneapolis

The alarming incident was spotted by the new MPD chief, Brian O'Hara.


trick-or-treating, Halloween

Here's how cold it will be during trick-or-treating hours in MN

Temps falling into the upper 20s in most places by 8 p.m.

Free rides on New Year's Eve

Minnesotans looking for safe travel on New Year's Eve can ride Metro Transit for free starting at 6 p.m. The free rides are for any bus route and will run through the all scheduled stops.

Frigid forecast for trick-or-treating on Halloween

Nothing like wearing a winter jacket beneath your costume...