First Night for Iowa City

First Night 2002 An ice sculpture depicting a horse at Copley Square is admired by a crowd awaiting the countdown to the 2002 New Year.

First Night is an annual tradition in dozens of cities and countries and I would like to see one established here in Iowa City. We have all the necessary ingredients; a thriving arts community, numerous venues, cultural diversity, a walkable city, and strong support for the arts.

Imagine, on December 31st, starting at noon, a day-long arts festival featuring local artists, perfomers, and organizations with alcohol-free activities for the whole family.

Imagine paying a few dollars for a First Night button that grants you admission to a variety of performances and other events, including kids activities, shows, concerts, lectures, workshops and exhibitions, culminating with fireworks at midnight.

Imagine thousands of visitors, artists, musicians, and volunteers gathering to celebrate in downtown Iowa City.

• Imagine enjoying a parade, jugglers, magicians, ice scuptures, dancers, musicians in churches, theatres, hotels, galleries, and public spaces of Iowa City.

If you have been looking for a family friendly event on New Years Eve in Eastern Iowa, please add your comments and suggestions and help get this idea off the ground.

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