Welcome to
First Night Northampton 2018

Happy New Year! You're invited to attend Northampton's most beloved signature event. On Sunday, December 31st, the Northampton Arts Council and PeoplesBank welcome you to the 33rd edition of our city-wide New Year's Eve party. Since 1985, First Night Northampton has filled the Paradise City with a 12-hour, family-friendly festival of the arts culminating in a traditional ball-raising from the roof of the Hotel Northampton. Gather with friends, neighbors and visitors at 20 terrific downtown venues for an astounding array of entertainment presented by hundreds of talented performers. Our efforts are supported by generous local sponsors and dedicated volunteers. One hundred percent of proceeds benefit community arts.

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Our noon kick-off at the Academy of Music offers twice as many thrills with TWO performances of SHOW Circus Studio's eye-popping FIRST NIGHT GALAXY OF STARS. Or join the action at "The Box," presented by Paintbox Theatre at 12 and 1 pm at Theatre 14. Don't miss our double feature of Yo-Yo Astronaut as well as Mad Science of Western New England in the 3-4 pm slot at John M. Greene Hall.

Our performance program is filled with hours of excitement for kids and adults. In the afternoon, enjoy jugglers, magicians, dancers, puppets, a cappella voices plus classical and contemporary music from solo to quintet, acoustic to electric. We even have a guitar orchestra! Jam with Dr. Marmalade at Forbes Library, or sing along with the Nields at their family show in First Churches Sanctuary. Treat yourself to the Valley Light Opera, making a fourth First Night appearance with two performances of "Trial by Jury," 3 and 4 pm at Theatre 14.

Fireworks at 6:15 top off the afternoon and signal the start of the evening entertainment. The City of Northampton hosts a fabulous display that lights up the sky from the roof of the central parking garage. You can see the fireworks from all over town. After that, the festivities continue with a diverse range of offerings, including back-to-back performances by the beloved Northamptones at the Academy and capped by a single show starring Heather Maloney. Feel like dancing? Stroll down Conz Street where you'll discover rockabilly stompers L'il BeeDee & the Doo-Rites at the World War II Club. Prefer to sit back and listen? First Night favorite The Fawns makes a two appearances at The Parlor Room, while dynamic duo Evelyn Harris and Jerry Noble jazz up the night at First Churches. If you're in the mood for "Nashville meets Brooklyn," Miss Tess and the Talkbacks are at Edwards Church.

Later, it's time to gather at the Hotel Northampton for the iconic raising of the ball. D.J. Trumpy from Hits 94.3 pays homage to our unique COUNT-UP by spinning up-beat tunes that will have you dancing in the streets by midnight. A single bargain-priced button opens the doors to every event at every venue. Buy one early at a local vendor or online, and check out the companion performance schedule as well as the logistical tips that follow.

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