First Night Austin
100,000 revelers can't be wrong
This year's event stretches from Congress Avenue at Fifth Street down to Cesar Chavez, along Cesar Chavez to the South First Street bridge, across it to Riverside Drive, and across Auditorium Shores. The fun starts at 4pm with the traditional Family Festival. At 6pm, the Grand Procession starts at Fifth and Congress and proceeds to Auditorium Shores, where, at 8pm, Community Art Makers – the folks who brought you 2009's Resolution Clock – will ignite Dorothy, their 36-foot-tall tornado of colored flame, and Wolf Stuntworks will provide snow. At 9pm, look for the Waterlight Parade, an illuminated procession of boats on Lady Bird Lake provided by the Austin Rowing Club. Then, runners can get in their last race of the year at 10pm with the First Night Run, a 3K run through Downtown organized by RunTex. At 11:30pm, a unique Vespa painted by artist Sheri Mays and autographed by cinemaster Richard Linklater will be raffled off in front of City Hall. Then, when the clocks hit midnight ... what else? Fireworks.
Other highlights to tempt you:
• Thirst, From Loss to Grace – Diverse Space Dance Theatre's choreographic tribute to Austin creatives who died in 2009 (among them Lucia Rodriguez, Tina Marsh, Amy Farris, and Robin Shivers). Toni Bravo, Sharon Marroquin, Orlando Casnove, and Christopher Swain provide choreography to music by the Creative Opportunity Orchestra and Russ Smith.
• The combined forces of the Austin Civic Chorus and Austin Vocal Arts Ensemble sing Handel's "Hallelujah Chorus," the finale of Beethoven's Ninth, and Orff's "O Fortuna" from Carmina Burana.
• The Human Powered, Road Going, Viking Boat by EGAD Adventure Capital.
• Dale Jenssen's 11-foot-tall, illuminated, interactive spaceship sculpture.
• An installation of sounds and swings whose lights change color by artists Danielle and Jason Mika, technical wizard Joe Martin, and audio composer Jonathan Sylvan.
• A 20-foot-by-20-foot luminous cube by Richard Philips.
• A 35-foot-long Art Bus created by high school students from Club Arthouse working with local artist Cybil Guess.
• Art cars by Rebecca Bass (Dragon Z), Bonnie Blue (Women Rock Art Car), Terry Brooks (Illuminaughty), Kenny Browning (Iron Maiden), Kim Ritter (the Peace Expedition), and Nicole Strine (Shattered Vanity).
• Music by Artificial Life Preserver, cellist Steve Bernal, the Blue Hit, Stephanie Briggs, the Daze, Foot Patrol, Gravelwhip, Hipnautica, Ky Hote, the Oziene Experience, the Austin branch of the Paul Green School of Rock, the Peterson Brothers Band, Ashleigh Stone, and Tres Womack & the Chubby Knuckle Choir.
• Contributions from past First Night participants such as Austin Bike Zoo, Austin Shakespeare, Austin Taiko, and Texas Juggling Society.
For more information, visit www.firstnightaustin.org.