For many celebrating the start of another year, the most important part is what happens at midnight. Tennessee knows how to have fun, and wherever you choose to spend New Year's, you're sure to find something to suit your tastes. There are many great spots where you can catch world-class fireworks shows, including:
Explore Great Smoky Mountains National Park's numerous hiking trails and wildlife. Take the aerial tramway from downtown to Ober Gatlinburg, where ice skating, ski trails, and snow tubing await. Thanksgiving is also when Gatlinburg celebrates its annual Winter Magic Festival. Kids will love riding the festive Trolley Ride of Lights as it meanders through traditional Christmas scenes and depictions of foxes, bears, and deer.
Thanksgiving is the perfect time to teach children how to appreciate the things they have in life by helping those less privileged. Join the annual Great Thanksgiving Banquet by Nashville Rescue Mission and help prepare and serve meals to thousands of homeless people. Afterward, head out for a Thanksgiving hike around the Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park.
In West Tennessee, renowned for its bluegrass music traditions, you can also enjoy huge performances followed by magnificent fireworks. This city’s NYE celebrations are known for their food stalls, which are great for filling up at over the course of the night as you soak up the vibrant Memphis atmosphere and look forward to another New Year.
Tennessee locals exude Southern charm, and there’s a lot for families to see together in the state's friendly atmosphere as they ring in the New Year.
Back in East Tennessee, spend the daw amid calmer ambiance at the foot of the Smoky Mountains before checking out the fantastic local live music performances and firework shows. Kids into fossils, nature, and science will love the Rocky Mount Living History Museum and the Hands On! Regional Museum. Roll around at the Family Skate Center, another hotspot for family activities.
This Middle Tennessee beauty is also fantastic for family activities before the big day. Check out the Discovery Center, a brilliant children’s museum including play exhibits and animals to look at, too. Also, many of Murfreesboro’s restaurants stay open late, letting you savor local Tennessee cuisine and a glass of champagne as you celebrate the arrival of another year.
This West Tennessee city also has a range of superb spots for keeping kids entertained, including Rusty’s TV and Movie Car Museum, the N.C. & St. L. Depot and Railway Museum, and escape room experiences. Enjoy a champagne toast and contests at the New Year’s celebrations, or head to one of the grill houses for a more casual night of celebration.
For many visitors to the Volunteer State, there’s no bigger attraction than the amazing music performances it’s famous for. Whether you’re a blues, bluegrass, country, rock, or pop music fan, there’s a night for you on New Year’s Eve in Tennessee.
One of the best Tennessee New Year’s Eve destinations, Knoxville offers everything from musicals at the Tennessee Theatre to bluegrass and country music concerts. Outdoor shows and fireworks displays in Market Square complete the package.
A somewhat more laid-back but thoroughly vibrant night of music awaits in Chattanooga, where discos, rock-and-roll clubs, and live bands are aplenty. Visiting the Chattanooga Whiskey Experimental Distillery and going on winter walks through the enchanting surroundings of Coolidge Park and Tennessee Riverpark will surely get you in the mood for the big night.
You can’t go wrong in Nashville, the world’s country music capital, if you're hoping to catch iconic musicians performing live. For something a little different, head to the Music City's suburb of Franklin and check out the live music at its bars and pubs. Some prefer the calmer atmosphere here, and you’ll beat the big-city crowds.