Kids in Wheeling get early start on celebrating arrival of 2018

 
By Gilbert R. Boucher II
gboucher@dailyherald.com
Updated 12/31/2017 3:28 PM
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  • Masha Liokumovich of Buffalo Grove takes a selfie with her son, Jacob, 6, during "Happy Noon Year" at the Wheeling Park District Community Recreation Center on Sunday. Families enjoyed dancing, games, a ballon drop and a sparkling grape juice toast to welcome in 2018.

      Masha Liokumovich of Buffalo Grove takes a selfie with her son, Jacob, 6, during "Happy Noon Year" at the Wheeling Park District Community Recreation Center on Sunday. Families enjoyed dancing, games, a ballon drop and a sparkling grape juice toast to welcome in 2018. Gilbert R. Boucher II | Staff Photographer

  • Jodee Evans, 7, of Lake Zurich wears 2108 glasses as she blows a horn Sunday during "Happy Noon Year" at the Wheeling Park District Community Recreation Center. Families enjoyed dancing, games, a ballon drop and a sparkling grape juice toast to welcome in 2018.

      Jodee Evans, 7, of Lake Zurich wears 2108 glasses as she blows a horn Sunday during "Happy Noon Year" at the Wheeling Park District Community Recreation Center. Families enjoyed dancing, games, a ballon drop and a sparkling grape juice toast to welcome in 2018. Gilbert R. Boucher II | Staff Photographer

  • Anna Janas, 3, of Wheeling dances with her father, Arek, during "Happy Noon Year" at the Wheeling Park District Community Recreation Center on Sunday. Families enjoyed dancing, games, a ballon drop and a sparkling grape juice toast to welcome in 2018.

      Anna Janas, 3, of Wheeling dances with her father, Arek, during "Happy Noon Year" at the Wheeling Park District Community Recreation Center on Sunday. Families enjoyed dancing, games, a ballon drop and a sparkling grape juice toast to welcome in 2018. Gilbert R. Boucher II | Staff Photographer

  • Three-year-old Neerav Raj looks back at his parents Sunday as he joins other children playing with a parachute during "Happy Noon Year" at the Wheeling Park District Community Recreation Center. Families enjoyed dancing, games, a ballon drop and a sparkling grape juice toast to welcome in 2018.

      Three-year-old Neerav Raj looks back at his parents Sunday as he joins other children playing with a parachute during "Happy Noon Year" at the Wheeling Park District Community Recreation Center. Families enjoyed dancing, games, a ballon drop and a sparkling grape juice toast to welcome in 2018. Gilbert R. Boucher II | Staff Photographer

Children wore glasses designed with "2018" and blew party horns Sunday as they celebrated "Happy Noon Year" with their parents at the Wheeling Park District Community Recreation Center on Sunday.

The highlight of the event was a Happy New Year countdown at noon, followed by the release of balloons and a sparkling grape juice toast.

"It is tailored specifically for the kids," said Amanda Hamill, special events manager for the Wheeling Park District.

More than 400 children and adults joined in the festivities that also included music, dancing and games.

"This is fun for the kids to just enjoy the New Year because they can't stay up so late. This is awesome for them," Masha Liokumovich of Buffalo Grove said as she took pictures of her sons, Jacob and Oliver, and her husband, Andrey. "I'm not staying up till midnight tonight because this is actually a party for me as well."

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