First Night Canfield 2012 is now in the books and committee members said they are pleased with the outcome. FNC Executive Director Barb Smith said the numbers were up.
"We consider 2,500 in attendance as a good year," Smith said. "At the recent event we looked at button sales and the numbers going through the venues and we were close to 3,000."
The event kicked off with the return of the dinner theater featuring Canfield graduate-turned-professional singer Sarah McGraw. The 2011 event saw the absence of a dinner theater, but after a lot of requests to bring it back, the FNC committee did so.
Photos special to the Town Crier
Olivia Madura was one of hundreds of young people to participate in the fun at Canfield Village Middle School during First Night Canfield. Madura is pictured here with Patty Cervello, who was offering face painting.
"We heard from the community that they missed these activities last year. So we brought them back and are delighted at the attendance for both activities," said Smith. "This is truly a community event supported by service clubs, the schools, Canfield city and township, the churches and area businesses. As such, we listen to community members' suggestions."
All the venues were well attended, including the youth events, which were again free to those 18 and under. FNC is the only First Night across the globe to offer free attendance to youth age 18 and under.
Even the fireworks at midnight were well attended, making New Year's Eve a memorable event.
"It was an exciting night," Smith said. "We had plenty of great entertainment for all ages including sharing an earthquake experience compliments of Mother Nature,"
The committee is already starting to work on the 2013 FNC event. It will mark the 15th year for the event and Smith said it will be a big one.
"We don't know what we are going to do yet, but it will be a special night," she said.
The one minor glitch this year was in banner sales. The intent was to sell advertising space on banners that would connect to the city lamp posts. Unfortunately, the committee was unaware of the protocol for obtaining permits from the city and the idea had to be put on hold for next year.
Smith said it was a good fundraiser, but it didn't hurt FNC financially. She said the funds from the project weren't critical, but it would have been nice to have the extra income. The committee now knows it must apply through the city's planning zoning and committee to use city light poles for advertising banners.