NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

December 27, 2012

A full First Night

Portsmouth celebration offers music, dance, ice sculptures and more

By Katie Lovett
Features Editor

---- — New Year’s Eve — a night to reflect on the year that was and look ahead to the days ahead. In other words, out with the old and in with the new.

And what better way to do just that than with some First Night festivities in Portsmouth? The New Hampshire city has hosted a New Year’s Eve celebration since 1986. Each year, the fun includes music, dance, ice sculptures and, of course, a fireworks display to welcome the new year.

First Night-goers won’t be disappointed this year again as a jam-packed afternoon and evening of activities and entertainment await the crowds of revelers.

OUTDOORS

Street Dance: 5 p.m. to midnight, Pleasant Street at Market Square. Hosted by WSCA — Portsmouth Community Radio

Make your New Year’s resolution on a star!

Stargazing: NH Astronomical Society, Pleasant Street.

Fireworks Display at 7:30 p.m. South Mill Pond

Countdown to Midnight in the Square at the Street Dance

Ice Sculptures: Work commences at about 1 p.m., North Church at Market Square

INDOORS

The Connie Bean Center Center, at The Portsmouth Middle School (155 Parrott Ave.)

Abracadabra! Magic with Phil Smith 4:15 to 5 p.m., 5:15 to 6 p.m.

155 Parrott Avenue Stories with Peter Sheridan 6:15 to 7 p.m.

4 to 9 p.m.

Bob Nilson, Caricatures galore

Face Painting

Late Night at the NEW ’Bean 8 to 10:30 p.m.

Battle of the Bands; local bands showcase their talents as they compete for a chance to play at Market Square Day this summer.

Middle Street Baptist Hall, 18 Court St.

Summer in the Street heads indoors! These two groups have been a part of the summer music series. Both feature outstanding local singer songwriters.

5 to 5:45 p.m., 6:15 to 7 p.m.

Acheson Gown

The group is the fine blend of singer songwriter Elissa Margolin and guitarist Tom Acheson Brown. Together they create an acoustic tonic for the soul.

8:15 to 9 p.m., 9:30 to 10:15 p.m.

Old Saw

A blend of blues, jazz and Americana, Old Saw is the offspring of Nickie and Charlie Farr. What started as a solo project for actress/singer/songwriter Nickie Fuller Farr in about 2004, turned into a band when her husband, drummer/guitarist Charlie joined in,

The North Church, Market Square

4:15 to 4:45 p.m., 5:45 to 6:15 p.m., Lindsay Bezich, Puppets galore!

5 to 5:30 p.m., 6:30 to 7 p.m., children’s performer Sammie Haynes

8:15 to 9 p.m., 9:30 to 10:15 p.m., 10:45 to 11:30 p.m.

T.J. Wheeler and Company

Blues, more blues, a bit of R & B and jazz

Seacoast Repertory Theatre, 125 Bow St.

5 to 5:45 p.m., 6:15 to 7 p.m.

Michael Miclon

With everything from wacky characterizations and sight gags to juggling, costumes, props and audience participation, Miclon’s performances provides laughs for all ages.

8 to 8:45 p.m., 9:15 to 10 p.m., 10:30 to 11:15 p.m.

Roderick Russell — Almost Psychic!

If Sherlock Holmes had a stage show, this would be it. Interactive, delightfully weird and it includes sword swallowing.

South Church, 292 State St.

5 to 9 p.m., chili dinner and cookoff. Proceeds fund mission work in Appalachia

Rock My Soul, 5 to 5:45 p.m., 6:15 to 7 p.m.

Salt River, 8 to 8:30 p.m., 9:45 to 10:15 p.m.

Wooden Eye, 8:45 to 9:30 p.m., 10:30 to 11:15 p.m.

Temple Israel, 200 State St.

8:15 to 9 p.m., 9:30 to 10:15 p.m., 10:45 to 11:30 p.m.

Randy Armstrong Trio with Jose Duque & Volker Nahrmann offer world fusion jazz

United Methodist Church Hall, 129 Miller Avenue

8:15 to 9 p.m., 9:30 to 10:15 p.m., 10:45 to 11:30 p.m.

All Together Now, a Beatles tribute band

W.E.S.T. — West End Studio Theatre, 959 Islington St.

Pontine performs “A Child’s Christmas in Wales,” 5 to 5:30 p.m., 6 to 6:30 p.m.

NH Theatre Project presents “The Play’s the Thing!” featuring theater games and comedy improve, 8 to 8:45 p.m., 9 to 9:45 p.m.

THINGS TO KNOW

BUTTONS: $20 for adults through Dec. 30; $25 on Dec. 31; $2 for children under age 12. No one is admitted to a site without a button. Seating is on a first-come, first-served basis.

RESTROOMS are available at all sites for all First-Nighters.

PARKING: The Parking Garage at Hanover will offer a $3 flat rate parking from 4 to 8 p.m. (collected upon entry). Parking on the entire length of Parrott Avenue will be prohibited from noon to 9: p.m. Church Street will be closed from noon to midnight. Parking on Pleasant Street from State to Market Square is prohibited from 4 p.m. to midnight.

TRANSPORTATION: A free bus service will run between all venues from 4 p.m. to midnight.