For years, fireworks have been a First Night highlight.
Fired from downtown an hour or so before midnight, they traditionally mark the end of the fun, entertainment-filled family festivities on New Year’s Eve.
The fireworks are back this year. But they can’t be shot from the new Levitt Pavilion. The only launching site is the Saugatuck River — and this year the late-night tide is so low, the barge would be mired in mud. So the fireworks are set for 7:30 p.m.
Organizers hope that when the final firework fades this year, First Night-goers don’t pack up and go home.
There’s plenty of activity, for a few more hours. Back by popular demand is the rock band Squeaky Clean. Washboard Slim and the Bluelights bring jug band music into the 21st century. School of Rock will rock. The Silver Steel drum band gets everyone dancing. Broadway baritone Beau Allen debuts. Longtime favorite Chris Coogan will once again appear, and the Westport Community Theater offers intriguing vignettes.
Also on tap after the fireworks: a balloon artist, caricaturist, magic genie, fortune tellers, psychics, and palm and tarot card readers. And, of course, horse-drawn carriages, a warming fire and star-gazing on Jesup Green.
Westport’s First Night is one of the oldest — and best — in the nation. Get ready to enjoy them this year. Then be sure to stick around long after the fireworks end.
(For more information, including how to purchase a First Night button, click here.)