The Coolest Ways to Ring in 2023 in Philadelphia

New Year’s Eve parties, fireworks displays, and plenty of decadent meal options.

NYEmo celebration
Photo courtesy of Fame Lust
Photo courtesy of Fame Lust

Another year in the books, another one on the horizon. 2022 was another banner year for Philadelphia: The Phillies had a World Series run, a whole lotta new restaurants opened, and Center City Sips made its grand return—among many other milestones. So before turning the calendar to 2023, give 2022 a proper sendoff with parties galore, plus a few tamer goings-on if your bedtime is earlier than midnight, on our list of the best ways to celebrate the new year in Philadelphia.

Please Touch Museum
The ball drops at noon at the Please Touch Museum’s annual Countdown2Noon New Year’s Eve event for tots. Let your little one get in on the fun with musical performances all morning and afternoon, a meet and greet with the Squiggles, stilt walkers, exhibit access, and a ball drop with ample confetti.
Cost: $25

Franklin Square
A ball drop would be too basic for Franklin Square, which welcomes the new year with a Square Drop at 6 pm on New Year’s Eve. The festivities also include crafts, the Electrical Spectacle Light Show, and views of the 6 p.m. Delaware River waterfront fireworks. Just keep in mind the park closes at 8 pm.
Cost: Free

PEEPSFEST | SteelStacks

Bethlehem, Pennsylvania
If you thought the Square Drop was groundbreaking, wait until you see a 400-pound Peeps Chick plummet from the sky. Bethlehem’s PEEPSFEST, an annual event dedicated to the confection, is an afternoon affair with live music, Peeps tasting, a Leaning Tower of Peeps, and the Peeps Chick Drop at 5:35 pm.
Cost: $5

Delaware River Waterfront

Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest
If you don’t mind the cold, ring in the new year with both drinks and blades on ice. Timed to coincide with both the early and late Rivers Casino New Year’s Eve fireworks shows, attendees can pick from one of two parties starting at either 5 or 10 pm. On the docket: plenty of ice skating; ferris wheel rides; boardwalk and arcade games; food from Chickie’s & Pete’s, Skelly’s Pizza, and Black Iron BBQ by Craft Hall; a cash bar; music from a DJ; and, of course, ace views of the fireworks.
Cost: $50-60

Cherry Street Pier
Cherry Street Pier | Photo by Maria Young

Cherry Street Pier
Right down the street from Winterfest, Cherry Street Pier will host its own waterfront dance party. The space will be decorated in its holiday best and sparkling lights and vocalist Tanqueray Hayward with DJ Cameron Kelly will bring New Orleans house music all night. Sure, the pier is subject to some crosswinds, but you’ll have a front-row seat to the fireworks show. Tickets include one complimentary beverage, but otherwise, food and drink are pay-as-you-go.
Cost: $35

Chris’ Jazz Cafe
If you exude cool out of all your pores, you might find a NYE celebration at a jazz club is more your style. Chelsea Reed & the Fairweather Five perform three sets—at 7, 9, and 11 pm—over a three-course Southern-inspired chef’s tasting dinner. Don’t forget the champagne toast at midnight to really make it official.
Cost: $75-145

Xfinity live
Photo courtesy of Xfinity Live

Xfinity Live!
Down by the sports arenas, a labyrinthian multi-venue party will take place at the legendary entertainment complex Xfinity Live! Each of the bars within the space features unique entertainment, like a DJ in the NBC Sports Arena, a silent disco in 1100 Social, and live music in Victory Beer Hall. A very Philly food menu from Geno’s Cheesesteaks, Chickie’s & Pete’s and Lorenzo and Sons Pizza will be available, as will an open bar. If you upgrade to VIP, you’ll have designated seating and private restrooms, too.
Cost: $100-140

Moshulu philly
Photo courtesy of Moshulu

For yet another waterfront party, the tall ship restaurant and club Moshulu will invite partiers to hit the deck for a banger with, you guessed it, prime fireworks views. Expect four dance floors with a variety of musical styles: NYC-based DJ Herbert Holler playing throwback hits on the main dance floor, DJs Oskar and Chris playing contemporary jams on the second dance floor, The Greg Farnese full jazz band in the ballroom, and the Kat Rivers Duo in the main dining room. To sweeten the deal, there’ll be a five-hour open bar.
Cost: $150

Kung Fu Necktie
Welcome to the Black Parade—err, 2023. Fishtown venue Kung Fu Necktie knows the best way to move forward in life is to look back at the music of your youth. The ultimate sadboi/girl NYE event comes with songs from Panic! At The Disco, My Chemical Romance, Paramore, Taking Back Sunday, Fall Out Boy, and so many more. The screamfest starts at 7 pm if you wanna get started early. Get the eyeliner ready.
Cost: $30

Stratus Lounge
Eleven floors above the bustling streets of Old City, one DJ Hollywood will be spinning on the roof of the Hotel Monaco. Enjoy a five-hour open bar, hors d’oeuvres, signature New Year’s Eve cocktails, and groove-worthy music.
Cost: $129-159

Franky Bradley’s
You’re the new It Girl. The last party of the year pays homage to the city’s socialites and celebs—maybe that’s you—with music from DJs Drootax and Cherry B with special guest appearances from other Philly nightlife greats. Plus, a midnight Champagne toast.
Cost: $20

City Winery
Where were you when the clock struck midnight on January 1, 2000? If you were perhaps too young to remember (ah, youth), come for the Y2K redux at City Winery where late ‘90s and early 2000s pop will blare all night. Think they forgot about a champagne toast at midnight? Get out of here.
Cost: $15-20

Craft Hall
Morgan’s Pier may be closed for the year, but the same summertime vibes come to Craft Hall when the two venues pair up for an epic NYE bash. Wet your whistle with a five-hour open bar, light snacks, party favors, and a toast of bubbly at the stroke of midnight. As for entertainment, 80s Revolution plays in the lower level and DJ Pfeff spins upstairs.
Cost: $75

Concourse Dance Bar
This subterranean club is fully equipped to handle the onslaught of New Year’s Eve partiers: They’ve got four bars (to responsibly take advantage of the five-hour open bar) and three rooms for dancing. DJs will play all night and if you’re feeling frisky, take a plunge into the ball pit.
Cost: $85-100

Jet Wine Bar

Treat yourself to a decadent meal

Various locations
What would New Year’s Eve be without fancy dinner reservations? Tons of local restaurants are unveiling special menus for the occasion, so take your pick. Amada will fulfill your Spanish tapas fantasies with albondigas (lamb meatballs), cordero a la plancha (lamb porterhouse), and arroz temperado (wild mushroom rice). For the first time, The Dutch, the popular brunch spot will host a NYE event with a prix-fixe menu of oysters, gnocchi with duck confit, surf and turf, vanilla rum custard cannoli, and more. If you’re more focused on the drink portion of your meal, head to Jet Wine Bar, where you can try 23 varietals of hard-to-find, global wine paired with caviar, fromage, and other snacks. Or pair your fancy meal with a burlesque and blues show, plus an open bar, at Twisted Tail.
Cost: Varies

Mummers Parade philly
Mummers Parade | J. Fusco for VISIT PHILADELPHIA

Broad Street from City Hall to Washington Avenue
Philly’s famous 120-year-old New Year’s Day parade returns for another strut. The five divisions of processions and string bands—comprising of Comics, Wench Brigades, Fancies, String Bands, and Fancy Brigades—in elaborate get-ups return to Broad Street for a day of revelry. Watch the parade from anywhere along South Broad Street from City Hall to Washington Avenue, or pay for a ticket for bleacher seating at City Hall and for the Fancy Brigade finale performances at the Pennsylvania Convention Center.
Cost: Free; $25-38 for ticketed seating/performances

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Allie Volpe is a writer based in Philadelphia. She hasn't slept in days. Follow her on Twitter: @allieevolpe.