Click here to view the First Night 2016 event guide


Downtown Akron Partnership




Q: What is First Night Akron?
A: First Night Akron is a family-friendly celebration of the New Year through the arts. It is a major visual and performing arts festival created by and for the community to welcome the New Year in Downtown Akron on December 31st each year. More than 80 artists and performing groups take the stage at First Night ranging from blues, jazz, rock to make and take and magic.

The first First Night Akron took place on December 31, 1996 and is now in its 20th year. 

Q: When is First Night Akron?
A: First Night Akron takes place on New Year’s Eve – Thursday, December 31, 2015 from 6 p.m.-midnight.

Q: Where does First Night Akron take place? Is all of the entertainment outdoors?
A: First Night Akron takes places at a variety of INDOOR venues in Downtown Akron. Venues include the Akron Art Museum, Akron Civic Theatre, Akron-Summit County Public Library, Greystone Hall, John S. Knight Center, Mainstage on Main Street, Lock 3, The Nightlight, Summit Artspace and Zion Lutheran Church.

There are a few activities that take place outdoors, like the fireworks on S. Main St., the Goodyear Ice Sculpture Gardens and ice carvings and visual displays, but the majority takes place indoors.

Q: Who’s invited?
A: Everyone! First Night is an event for the entire community can enjoy - couples, singles, families, empty nesters, young professionals and friends.

Q: Are there place to eat at First Night?
A: Many Downtown Akron restaurants are open on New Year's Eve and several First Night venues offer concessions and food for sale.

Q: Where do I park?
A: Free Parking is available in all city owned decks and lots in Downtown after 3 p.m. on First Night.  View the interactive Downtown Parking Map

Q: How do I get around once I arrive at First Night?
A: Stay warm while traveling from site to site by getting on a METRO bus at any First Night site or journey along the event loop from 6-11:30 p.m.  METRO service to Downtown is free with your First Night Button after 4 p.m. on December 31. The last zoned buses will depart from the METRO Transit Center at 1:00 a.m. (limited routes serviced at this time) so plan your excursion accordingly.  Call METRO Customer Service at 330-762-0341 for details. The city trolleys also run that night and their loop extends to the Northside District.

Q: How much does First Night cost?
A:  First Night admission buttons are $10. Children under 10 are FREE. An admission button allows you access to all First Night venues and activities.

Q: What if I have more questions?
A: Contact the First Night office at 330-374-7690 or