Friday, December 18, 2009

Cultural District to Host 15th 'First Night'

In many cities, a ball is dropped during the last ten seconds of New Year’s Eve to celebrate the coming of the New Year.

In Pittsburgh, the ball moves the other way.

“Representing the future of Pittsburgh looking up,” says First Night Director Kathryn Heidemann.

The “Future of Pittsburgh Ball” will rise as Scotland’s Average White Band takes the stage and fireworks fill the sky, marking the 15th Anniversary of the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust’s First Night celebrations.

Heidemann says there will be a massive number of artists and exhibits at the celebration, with many of the Cultural District’s venues hosting artistic activities and events. That includes the new August Wilson Center and the CAPA Middle School hosting acts like the “Pied Piper of Percussion” and belly dance lessons.

First Night Pittsburgh Founder Jamee Todd says things have changed since the first celebration in 1994.

“We had to explain so much to people that it was a celebration of the arts, using the city as a stage, but that it was an indoor event, and that they had to buy a button at Giant Eagle to get into everything,” says Todd. “It was just a constant explanation.”

It's $8 for a button that admits you to downtown events from 6:00 to midnight.

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