Fun Places for the Family on New Year's in Houston

by June Farquhar

Houston is the nation's sixth largest city. With its sports facilities, restaurants, a vast system of parks and special attractions, the city has something to appeal to every member of the family when it comes to New Year's Day activities.

Traditional Houston New Year

Eating black-eyed peas for good luck on New Year's Day is a time-honored Southern tradition. Make it easy to guarantee your good fortune by visiting a restaurant such as the Black-eyed Pea. There are six locations in the Houston area. People in Houston often like their black-eyed peas cooked with pork and diced onion and served with hot sauce. The tradition dates back to the Civil War, when Union troops destroyed food and crops but left field peas because they considered them animal food.


New Year's Day is a great time to involve the family in a resolution to stay fit. There are almost 100 miles of trails in the Houston Parks system where residents can run, hike, bike, walk or jog. There are also places to stop and rest, since the trails loop through or run alongside the parks. Many trails are located near playgrounds. The trails and parks open daily from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m.

Whole Life Expo

Each New Year's Day, CenterPoint hosts a Whole Life Expo. Family members visiting the expo can take part in interactive activities such as aura photos and spinal screenings or even consult a psychic to see what the New Year will hold. There are arts and crafts, music and gourmet foods as well as exhibits on such New Age practices as reflexology, ear candling, ion foot baths, kinesiology and reiki. The expo is held from 12 noon to 5 p.m. on New Year's Day.

Reliant Park

Houstonians like sports and have plenty of places to watch and to play. New Year's Day is a perfect time to take the family to catch a game at Reliant Stadium, such as the NFL's Houston Texans versus the Tennessee Titans. The Reliant Park complex also features the Reliant Center and the Reliant Arena. Check your local listings for possible concerts, family shows or consumer shows that may be running on New Year's Day.

About the Author

June Farquhar has been writing for newspapers and special publications in California since 1998. She's the recipient of a press club award for organizing and designing a 42-page "Red Ribbon Week" tabloid, which received recognition from the California State Assembly and the U.S. House of Representatives. Farquhar studied newspaper journalism at Bakersfield College.

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