Headliner announced for First Night Raleigh

— Folk rock band Scythian will headliner this year’s First Night Raleigh on New Year’s Eve celebration in downtown Raleigh, organizers announced Monday.

This year’s First Night theme is “Celebrating North Carolina Firsts.”

Events kick off at 2 p.m. Dec. 31 with the children’s celebration at the North Carolina museums of History and Natural Sciences and outside at the Bicentennial Plaza.

The interactive art exhibit Art Putt will also start at 2 p.m. This new attraction is a miniature golf course featuring nine “North Carolina Firsts” themed holes designed by local artists.

The First Night Ferris wheel is back this year. It will be joined by a new ride, “The Sizzler.” Both attractions open at 2 p.m. ​

Main stage performances start at 5 p.m. and the People’s Procession parade heads down Fayetteville Street at 6 p.m.

Headliners Scythian will host a special performance at the early countdown at 7 p.m. They will return to the stage later to help ring in 2016.

Ira David Wood III is back as the countdown master of ceremonies.

In addition to Scythian, First Night Raleigh will host many performances throughout downtown. Artists include Carolina Harmony Chorus, Jonathan Byrd, Josh Dumbleton, Raleigh’s own See Gulls, T0W3RS, African American Dance Ensemble, Paperhand Puppet Intervention, North Carolina Opera singers, John Dee Holeman, Comedy Worx, Transactors Improv Company and Flor y Canto.

Tickets are on sale now through First Night Raleigh’s website, at area Harris Teeter and Rite Aid stores and other local retailers. Advance tickets are $10. The day-of the event, ticket prices go up to $14 for adults and $11 for children.

,This year’s First Night theme is “Celebrating North Carolina Firsts.”

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