Harrisonburg New Year's Eve Tradition Canceled

By: Amanda Crawford Email
By: Amanda Crawford Email

Court Square in downtown Harrisonburg usually comes alive on New Year's Eve with singing, dancing and fun for the whole family.

This year, that tradition's been canceled.

"I couldn't believe it. I was really surprised to hear that," says Tom Metroka, the General Manager at The Artful Dodger. "It's been such a wonderful part of downtown, and I know that as somebody that lives downtown, that's a part of downtown, works here, shops here, lives here, I just can't believe it."

First Night Harrisonburg Executive Director Karris Atkins says they have only three volunteers on the board this year, which is not enough to plan such an elaborate event.

"It's a big disappointment for all of us," says Atkins. "I know it is for the community, too. We had really high hopes in the beginning of the year, and even throughout the summer, that we could make it happen."

Atkins says participation has gone down the past few years, but she thinks the community will miss having the event this year.

Metroka agrees and hopes that families still come downtown for New Year's Eve festivities.

"Who knows what's going to happen now," asks Metroka. "I mean, I would hope that downtown as a whole will still have these events and still do things, just as individual businesses."

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