What to do to ring in 2018


No plans for New Year’s Eve? No problem! IN|Fort Wayne has you covered with a two-day schedule to send off 2017 and ring in 2018 right.

Sunday, Dec. 31

After services or when you wake up: Start the festivities off right (and early) at Science Central’s Countdown to Noon. The museum’s annual event is complete with kids getting the opportunity to make party hats and noisemakers. As noon approaches, guests can enjoy cookies and a soda pop toast until a countdown ushers in the dropping of 2,018 balloons.

1 p.m.: Head over to the Foellinger-Friemann Botanical Conservatory to check out the Conservatory in Lights and Snow Days displays. The gardens have been decorated inside and out with poinsettias and lots of lights. In addition, the Snow Days exhibit takes a look at children’s favorite activities when snow is on the ground, demonstrated by snowpeople themselves.

3 p.m.: A short walk will take you to the Fort Wayne Museum of Art to see the part of the collection of David Shapiro’s paintings and prints that were given to the museum by his estate.

5 p.m.: Grab lunch at one of the many great eateries downtown.

6 p.m.: Drive over to Franke Park to take advantage of one last chance to see the Fantasy of Lights, which consists of more than 100 animated light displays to delight the whole family.

7:30 p.m.: We hope you’ve got your orange and black ready, because no New Year’s Eve would be complete without partaking in the annual last-day-of-the-year Komets game, this time against the Toledo Walleye, at the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum.

After the game: Head back downtown to enjoy the New Year’s Eve festivities, which begin with music and fireworks and end up with a countdown to 2018, complete with Fort Wayne’s own ball drop (with a real ball this time). Note: If you enjoy a little too much to drink, be sure to take the Holiday Cab home.

Monday, Jan. 1

1 a.m.: Sleep. Wake up late.

1 p.m.: Resolved to get more exercise in 2018? Start off on the right foot by participating in the 23rd annual Chilly Challenge. Participants will start at the Psi Ote Barn at Northside Park and bike 15- or 25-mile routes. The 15-mile route makes a stop at the next event…

2 p.m.: The annual polar plunge at Johnny Appleseed Park. Though this event seems to be the Fight Club of polar plunges (Rule 1, don’t talk about the polar plunge), this annual tradition sees more than 100 people every year coming to the boat ramp on Harry Baals Drive to run into the St. Joe River.