First Night Akron Won't Continue, After 22 Years as NYE Staple


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  • Photo by Jeffrey Klaum/Akronstock
Northeast Ohioans have a lot of choice in how they ring in the New Year. And for the last 22 years, that's included the family-friendly First Night Akron event in the Rubber City's downtown. Today, the non-profit Downtown Akron Partnership announced it would no longer host the New Year's Eve party, citing declining revenue and attendance.

“As we watched the patterns of attendance and support for the event, we’ve come to the conclusion that it’s time for the sun to set on First Night Akron and we look forward to the next need,” Suzie Graham, of the Downtown Akron Partnership, told the Akron Beacon Journal.

When the event was first launched, the goal was to attract people to the city's downtown, a place largely found desolate after the work day was through. At peak popularity, First Night Akron brought in 35,000 people, but last year only saw 10,000. However, with so many festivals, marathons and music events coming downtown throughout the years, the event hasn't been as necessary

Soon, a $26.7 million renovation is coming to the Main Street corridor, which the city hopes will attract even more visitors to LeBron James' hometown all year round.

For those families now looking for a brand new NYE tradition, there's always staying in and being safe at home with those you love most. 

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