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Looking for something to do on New Year’s Eve other than sit at home and watch the ball drop on TV? If so, we’ve got just the ticket for you. Here is your guide to First Night Monterey—one of the most anticipated events of the year.

This year’s theme is “Celebrating 25 Years of Magic!” and we are convinced it will be a magical evening. Here’s the WHO, WHAT, WHERE, WHEN, and WHY:

WHO: The whole community, including you and your friends and family are invited to celebrate the arts this New Year’s Eve. To attend the event, you must buy a button  here, or look for buttons in the community at participating partners. The earlier you purchase the button, the better deal you may be able to get!

WHAT: First Night Monterrey is a unique, creative and exciting community event to celebrate the arts. The night includes nine hours of fun from some of the finest entertainers. The entertainment includes everything from Aztec dancers to film festival programs to jazz and everything in between! The night is a citywide celebration filled with dancing, plays, songs and other creative expressions fit for all ages. Truly, there is something for everyone. Local buildings, theaters, concert halls and churches come alive in a unique and unified way to ring in the new year in style. It has become one of the most talked-about experiences of the year.

Note: To make the evening as comfortable and family-friendly as possible, the event is affordable and alcohol-free. Food and beverages will be sold at booths throughout the event. Additionally, many favorite local restaurants will be open and serving customers. If you want to see your options to make your plans, click here.

WHERE: The event will be held in historic, downtown Monterey. As usual, there will be multiple performance sites, most of which will be held indoors, and the event will take place rain or shine!

A note about parking: Parking for the event will be available in downtown Monterey garages as well as City Hall parking lots. The event will also offer a Park and Ride opportunity. To participate, park near the Macy’s Furniture store located at Del Monte Center and MST buses will shuttle on a regular basis between 3pm and 1am.

WHEN: This year’s event will be held on New Year’s Eve from 3:00 pm to midnight. At 3:00 pm the Opening Ceremony will begin on Colton Lawn stage located on Pacific Street. At 3:30 pm Kids Night Out! begins with face painting, puppet theater and other exciting art activities. Look for folk music and a beautiful procession at 5:30 pm. Visit the Interactive Resolution Sculpture and commit to your resolutions for the new year. Enjoy classical, jazz, hip hop, and reggae. Watch performances by young people and community members throughout the evening.

Important note: If you can’t make the entire evening, no problem! But be sure to note that the Grand Finale starts at 11:15 pm.

WHY: The San Francisco Chronicle named First Night Monterey in its list of “Ten Reasons to Visit Monterey County Now,” calling it “The state’s most dynamic and alcohol-free family-friendly New Year’s Eve festival.” Come experience this magical event for yourself!

Speaking of reasons to visit Monterey County now, we would love for you to stop in and visit us at Forest Hill. We are located in Pacific Grove on the Monterey Peninsula, and are a full-service retirement community that is truly like no other. Located in a picturesque, elegantly renovated historic hotel, we offer both the best of modern convenience and classic charm. Come see the breathtaking views of the Monterey Bay the Pacific Ocean. Meet the vibrant and active community. Enjoy the many unique features that make us Forest Hill. Visit or call us today with any questions: 831-657-5200.

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