Worcester will ring in 2018 with NYE bash

Jennifer Michaud

Although 35 years of tradition have come to a close with the shuttering of First Night Worcester, there will still be New Year’s Eve in the Woo, with a celebration hosted by  the Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce and Discover Central Massachusetts.

In May, the nonprofit First Night Worcester, Inc., announced that it would be discontinuing its operations.

“After careful review, we have decided the 35th would be our last event,” said Howard McGinn, executive director of First Night Worcester, in  a prepared statement. “We are grateful to the many supporters who have enabled us to meet our mission over these many years. Most of all, we thank the tens of thousands who have attended our annual event.”

However, the Chamber of Commerce and Discover Central Massachusetts have stepped up to ensure Worcester rings in the New Year in style.

“We’re looking to have live music, food vendors and performers. Something that keeps alive the feeling and essence of having a New Year’s celebration. And, of course, since it’s New Year’s, there will be some sort of pyrotechnics as well,” said Che Anderson, staff assistant to the city manager.

Not to be confused with First Night, this New Year’s Eve celebration will be a new take on the Worcester festivities. Although there will be no direct relationship with the previous event, there will be lots of reasons to be excited and involved.

“Our New Year’s celebration is an opportunity to get out and about in the community,” said Anderson. “We want to see people bringing friends and family to enjoy this special night. It will be a night of activities and engagement and really just being excited for a new year in Worcester.”

Though it’s the first time the Chamber of Commerce and Discover Central Massachusetts have come together to host this event, there is no certainty as to who will run it in the future. However, whether it be the continued by these two organizations, the city of Worcester or another committee, there is definitely a positive outlook for continued New Year’s celebrations in Worcester.

To help boost the excitement of a new annual event, the community is especially encouraged to get involved in any way. For those who are looking to get involved, there are various opportunities to share talents, ideas and products.

“If there are different institutions, businesses, galleries….anyone who wants to do any New Year’s events has the chance to get involved and have their events listed,” said Anderson.

Regarding the excitement and hope for another Worcester success, Anderson puts it simply: “Not only do we want to keep people in the city, but we want to attract people to the city so they can see that Worcester is a really cool place to be.”

For more, visit worcestercommonoval.com.