First Night Boston to Stop Operating, Lay Off Staff

First Night fireworks over Boston Harbor. The tradition needs funding and a new agency to continue.

Boston residents and visitors used to celebrating New Year’s Eve in the Copley Square area may have to change their plans for ringing in 2014.

First Night Boston, the nonprofit organization that has been running First Night festivals downtown since 1976, has ceased operations, citing a lack of funds to properly plan the annual affair, the Boston Business Journal reported Friday.

A vote taken by the board of directors to end operations takes effect immediately, and means the organization will stop planning First Night Boston 2014, according to the article.

According to a press release circulated by the First Night organization, the board hopes to transfer the First Night Boston trademark to the City of Boston, with the idea that the annual festivities might continue under the leadership of another organization.

“The board, recognizing that First Night is one of the city’s signature events, plans to work with the city to identify an organization that can assume the First Night brand and eventually produce an event containing at least some of the elements of a First Night celebration,” the press release states.

The non-profit agency responsible for the event will cease to operate June 30 and staff will be laid off, according to

If the city can only keep some of the traditional First Night events, which ones would you like to see them keep? Tell us in the comments.

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