First Night: Westport ringing in 2013 on a high note
Updated 12:39 pm, Monday, December 31, 2012
There really is no such thing as "something for everyone."
But if the vast array of First Night Westport entertainment in downtown Westport on Monday doesn't offer something to pique your fancy, you may need to get out more.
Families, couples and singles can welcome in the new year Monday afternoon and evening choosing among more than two-dozen performances and events -- music of many types, an array of dance programs, puppet shows, magic acts, palm readers and psychics, ice sculpture, theater and other performances.
Activities and shows are planned from 4 p.m. to 10:30 p.m., and all venues are within easy walking distance of each other. A $15 First Night button is the single ticket to all events.
Revelers can bid farewell to 2012 watching a parade of antique cars sputter down Main Street and welcome 2013 as a laser show lights the night sky over the Saugatuck River.
While the 19th annual First Night Westport remains a family-friendly event, organizers have added more acts to appeal to adults, including jazz and blues performers, a cabaret show and theater performances.
More InformationFIRST NIGHT WESTPORT When: New Year's Eve, 4 to 10:30 p.m. What: Vast array of entertainment for kids and adults at seven downtown venues, all an easy walk from each other. Price: First Night buttons are $15, good for admission to all events; available at all venues Monday afternoon. Venues: TD Bank main lobby; Christ and Holy Trinity Church; Westport Public Library; Westport Weston Family Y; Town Hall; Toquet Hall; Westport Historical Society. More info: www.firstnightww.com
Meanwhile, kid-friendly entertainment will be augmented by face painters and artists drawing caricatures of animals and families.
For adult tastes
Adult tastes will find variety to sample -- from jazz to bluegrass -- ballroom dancing to roller dance.
Blues pianist Mark Naftalin, the original keyboardist in the Paul Butterfield Blues Band, will perform a two-hour show play at the Westport Historical Society. Fairfield singer-singwriter Giorgio Fareira -- made famous by a viral video of him singing an order at a fast-food drive-through, will perform two shows in the Family Y's Bedford Room.
Jazz fans can heard two acts. Local favorite Chris Coogan and his group return with two performances at Christ and Trinity Church's Seabury Center, while Bob Lasprogato & Uptown Jazz will play a single late-afternoon show in the Family Y's Bedford Room.
Those with elegance and light feet can be part of the show in an evening of ballroom dancing in Christ and Trinity's Church's Branson Hall. Instructors will offer guidance for an evening of salsa, Cha Cha, Argentine tango, waltz and West Coast swing.
Revelers who enjoy elegance and art can chill out watching ice sculptor Bill Covitz create figures at the Moja Cafe. He is a former grand champion of the National Ice Carving Association and creates frozen centerpieces for hotels, restaurants, banquet halls and private parties across Connecticut.
For kids, families
Many family events are scheduled as early as 4 p.m. to accommodate young revelers with early bedtimes.
The Ultra Violet Puppets will perform at 4 p.m. and 5 p.m. in the Family Y's boardroom. The brightly color characters perform under black light and glow on stage. Kids who wear white to the show will glow, too.
Singer-songwriter Bari Koral, dubbed the "Sheryl Crow for kids" by the New York Post, will perform in the TB Bank main lobby at 4:30 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. Her latest album won a Parents Choice Award and was named a top-10 kids' album by Time Out Kids.
Dennis the Train Man, an annual hit with young First-Nighters, will be running his collection of locomotives and other model-rail cars in the Family Y's upper gym from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Another hit each year with kids and adults is percussionist Bob Bloom and his Drumming About You show. The audience can participate, tapping out beats on a variety of colorful drums and other percussion instruments Shows are at 4:40 p.m. and 6:15 p.m. in the Town Hall auditorium
In a nod to 21st Century technology, the laser show this year replaces fireworks as the grand finale. Laser Show Party, a Rockland County-based company, will beam colorful images into the sky over the Post Road bridge, accompanied by a soundtrack.
FIRST NIGHT WESTPORT
When: New Year's Eve, 4 to 10:30 p.m.
What: Vast array of entertainment for kids and adults at seven downtown venues, all an easy walk from each other.
Price: First Night buttons are $15, good for admission to all events; available at all venues Monday afternoon.
More info: www.firstnightww.com