Our First Night Massachusetts Guide is new today, December 31, 2016. We are quite late in getting this story published, but we wanted to get the feature out there and established for next year. There are first night celebrations all over the state of Massachusetts from Chatham to Worchester and Boston. Here’s our list for this year.
First Night Boston
Boston’s first night celebration is the oldest one in the state. It premiered in 1976. This celebration features early and late events that are designed to meet the needs of two distinct audiences. The early events run from noon to 4:00 pm and more geared towards families and children. These events lead up to an early fireworks display over Boston Common at 7:00 pm. The Countdown to Copley fireworks and light show take place at midnight. There are concerts and performances at venues all day long and all the events are free. Find out more.
First Night Worchester
Worchester’s first night is celebrating its 35th year. The festivities include folk music, jazz, choral groups, Irish dance groups, rock, bag pipe bands, bluegrass, country music, blues, thetrical performances, puppet shows, dance, ice sculptures, magic shows, bounce houses, acrobats, movies and more. The night comes to a close with a fireworks show at 11:15 pm from the top of Bell Hill. Admission is free with the purchase of a button for $10.00 to $15.00 each. Find out more.
First Night Beverly
Beverly is moving their celebration this year to Friday, December 30, 2016. The festivities this year all carry a Pokemon theme. Highlights from the events include face painting, kid’s arts and crafts, Irish Dancers, teen bands, curious creatures, juggling, party music, a magic show, a grand procession and the kid’s countdown and beach ball drop. There are no fireworks scheduled. Buttons are available for $8.00 each. Find out more.
First Night Chatham
First Night Chatham is celebrating their twenty-sixth year on December 31, 2016. The fun begins at noon and continues till dusk when the fireworks go off at Veterans Field. The event celebrates the arts and culture of the region and takes place at locations all over town. Early highlights of the festivities include an annual town photo that is taken at the Chatham Lighthouse, a bubble wrap stomp, and a Carnival Caper costumed road race. There’s also a concert with the Cape Cod Jazz Quartet at the Orpheum Theater, miniature golf at the Community Center Gym, Bradley James at the Congregational Church, Keltic Kids at St. Christopher’s Chapel. You’ll also find Cirque du Jour at the Middle School Large Gym, Chinese Folk Dancers at the Middle School Auditorium, Ryder Martin’s Fabulous Trains at Atwood House Museum, and Horse Drawn Wagon Rides at Town Hall. Later in the day, there is a Noise Parade, early evening, low-level fireworks at Veteran’s field for children that can’t wait till midnight, and finally the Countdown Cod and fireworks on Oyster Pond at midnight.
First Night Chatham Buttons are available for $20.00 each. Children’s buttons are available for $5.00 each for children between the ages of 3 to 11 years old. Find out more.
First Night Sandwich
First Night Sandwich celebrates its fifth year in 2017. The festivities begin at 4:00 pm on Saturday, December 31, 2016. This family-friendly event is a non-alcoholic celebration of the arts. Some of the performances include Mamadou, a five piece African band playing at town hall, The Green Briar Nature Center puppets at 1st Church, and Woodhall/Jackson Folk Music at C.W.’s. You’ll also find the Cape Cod Guitar Ensemble at Sandwich Glass Museum, Vernon Parris Steel Drums at the library, and the Highland Light Scottish Pipe Band at the Masonic Lodge.
There will also be ice sculptures, a children’s ice skating rink, lighted giants in the village and along Route 6A, children’s crafts, a fairy garden, and a Resolution Wall. The Reveler’s Parade starts at 8:00 pm. Lineup begins at 7:00 pm at Wing School. The parade route winds through town and ends up at First Church and Shawme Pond. The night concludes with the fireworks display over the pond. The finale features the lighting of the giant sea creature sculptures, a cannon firing and a fireworks display on Shawme Pond.
First Night Sandwich buttons can be purchased at locations all over town. The buttons grant you admission to all of the night’s events. The cost is $10.00 each for adults and $6.00 each for children, ages 3 to 12 years old. Buttons can also be purchased at Sandwich Town Hall on Saturday beginning at 3:00 pm. Find out more.
First Light Provincetown
First Light in Provincetown is a five-day celebration that includes a polar bear plunge, a winter farmers market, dances, brunches, ice skating, a Sound of Music Sing-Along and fireworks on Sunday, January 1, 2017.
Here’s a quick rundown of the highlights of the events for each day of the festival.
- Thursday, December 29, 2016 Lunch and dinner at many local restaurants, live entertainment at Tin Pan Alley, Cabaret at Provincetown Theater, and Karaoke at Club Purgatory
- Friday, December 30, 2016 Friday, you’ll find events like holiday breakfasts, brunches, lunches and dinners at local restaurants, Family Pizza Night at the library, and Edenville in concert at the Sage Inn. Also, there’s a Sound of Music Sing-a-Long with the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence at Town Hall, Cabaret at Provincetown Theater, live music at Tin Pan Alley and Crown & Anchor. There will also be holiday dances, and a Holiday Market at the Canteen with Hanukkah food and festivities, vendors, artisans and more.
- Saturday, December 31, 2016 (early) Saturday, you’ll find holiday breakfasts, brunches, lunches and dinners at local restaurants, and the Provincetown Farmers Market at Town Hall. The Holiday Market at Canteen will feature local vendors, artisans, performers, grilled sausages, hot soups, soft pretzels and more. Later you might enjoy New Year’s Drag Bingo at the Crown & Anchor, Wicked Wonderland at the Art House, or a Light Bright Bike Ride at Town Hall (decorated bicycles in a parade competing for prizes). There will also be special New Year’s Eve Dinners at Tin Pan Alley, Jimmy’s Hideaway, Mac’s Fish House, Central House, and Spindler’s.
- Saturday, December 31, 2016 – PTown New Year’s Eve Dances There will be jubilant dances and celebrations all over town. Strangers and Saints throws a party with dance music, cocktails, light snacks, party favors, a champagne toast and a brunch buffet at midnight. Jim Brousseau plays piano at Tin Pan Alley. VJ Tom Yaz plays the best videos; Bobby Weatherbee plays piano and DJ Chris Racine plays the latest dance hits at the Crown & Anchor. DJ Beth O plays at Sage Inn. DJ Dave plays at Club Purgatory. And finally there’s a New Year’s Eve Party with DJ David LaSalle, Thirsty Burlington, hats, noisemakers and a champagne toast for a $10.00 cover charge at A-House.
- Sunday, January 1, 2017 New Year’s Day you can enjoy holiday breakfasts, brunches, lunches and dinners at local restaurants or the Provincetown Farmers Market at Town Hall. The Holiday Market at Canteen continues with local vendors, artisans, performers, grilled sausages, hot soups, soft pretzels and more. There will also be a Family Picnic Lunch at the library, a film screening of “All We Had” at Water’s Edge Cinema, and an Art opening at Rosewind Gallery at Sage Inn. Later you can watch the Polar Bear Plunge with cocktails, chili, hot chocolate and coffee at the beach at Johnson Street, or take in the Wicked Winter Wonderland at Provincetown Art House. As the day comes to a close, you’ll find Fireworks Cocktail Parties at Crown & Anchor and Spindler’s. The day comes to a grand finale moment with Provincetown’s First Light Fireworks at MacMillian Pier at dusk (approximately between 5:00 and 6:00 pm)
- Sunday, January 1, 2017 (after the fireworks) The party continues in PTown after the fireworks with cocktails, buffets and dinner at local restaurants and bars, and the Rat Pack Gala at Provincetown Theater. There’s also the John Thomas & Paul Bisaccia Piano Concert at UU Meeting House, Zoe Lewis on piano at Tin Pan Alley, and dancing at A-House. Finally, there’s Suede’s Annual New Year’s Concert at Crown & Anchor.
- Monday, January 2, 2017 Monday the festivities continue with more breakfasts, brunches, and lunches at local restaurants, The Holiday Market continues for one last day at Canteen with local vendors, artisans, performers, grilled sausages, hot soups, soft pretzels and more. The final event of the festival is the Tin Pan Alley Closing Party with live entertainment.
First Night Northampton
New Bedford New Year’s Eve
New Bedford celebrates the coming of the New Year with a full evening of family friendly activities that are all free. This First Night New Bedford type event features stilt walkers, live music, ice sculptures, local food vendors, fire eaters, and a fireworks display at 8:30 pm at State Pier. The events start at 5:00 pm near Custom House Square. The fireworks are best seen from lower Union Street from Route 18 to North Water Street.
There is also a special New Year’s Eve Bash at the New Bedford Whaling Museum presented by the Zeiterion Performing Arts Center. The Bash features live music by the Becky Chase Band and Dori Rubbicco, food by Russell Morin Caterers, a champagne toast, cash bar, roaming performers, a fortune teller and children’s entertainment. Visitors will also have an incredible front row view of the fireworks along the waterfront. The event runs from 7:00 pm to 10:00 pm. Tickets are $50.00 each for adults and $15.00 each for children under the age of 12.