Are you looking for a fun celebration to ring in the New Year that doesn't require lots of travel and offers the option of family friendly entertainment?
Middletown's Middnight on Main — a celebration that spanned most of Main Street for the past two years — is not continuing this year so if you want to fete, head to the capitol city of Connecticut.
First Night Hartford — in its 25th year — is a public celebration that marks the passage from the old year to the new with art, ritual and festivity that includes dozens of events throughout Hartford and two sets of fireworks at 6 p.m. and midnight.
It's all held in locations throughout downtown Hartford, include Bushnell Park, the XL Center Atrium, Hartford Public Library, City Hall, the Old State House, State House Square, the Wadsworth Atheneum, Center Church, Central Baptist Church, Pump House Gallery, Bushnell Park Carousel and the Winterfest Hartford rink.
Here is a smattering of what's ahead on New Year's Eve. For the full list of entertainment, see First Night Hartford
- New England natives, Balkun Brothers, bring an exciting, fresh, energetic and soulful blend of blues that is sure to get you moving and keep you entertained all night long.
- B-Boy Dancing featuring Tang Sauce, a multi- faceted hip-hop artist. He spreads the message of peace, love, positivity and consciousness. His influences include Lauren Hill and A Tribe Called Quest.
- Hip Hop DJ Nebula is from Middletown. He got his start in the golden age of hip-hop as a break-dancer and quickly transitioned to turntables.
- Horse Drawn Wagon Rides ($3 additional charge).
- Bill Walach is a Vernon native that entertains crowds with his impeccable musicianship, stories and wit. He plays a great display of Celtic, Bluegrass, Maritime and Americana songs.
- Cowboy Billy entertains with Western songs and humor. Kids will enjoy Bill Dougal’s own fun songs and tall tales. Families will also hear songs of the traditional and silver screen variety. There will hot chocolate and coffee for sale and an outdoor warming fire.
- The Food Court inside State House Square features: Chef Paolino Pizza, Mega Wraps, Moe’s Southwest Grill, MooYah Burgers, Surf City, Szechuan Express, The Natural, Panera and more.