Sullivan County Democrat
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LIBERTY MIDDLE SCHOOL Art Teacher Jane Jacobs, left, and Alexandra Hercules, her student, show off Alexandra’s First Night poster, which was chosen to be the one that represents the event.

'First Night' Aims
For Community Unity

By Nathan Mayberg
MONTICELLO — November 19, 2004 – Organizers of the annual First Night celebrations this New Year’s Eve have plans for greater community involvement – simply by beginning earlier at 4 p.m. and ending earlier at 9 p.m., rather than the traditional midnight party.
According to a press conference on it this past Tuesday, a parade will march down Broadway in Monticello, and fireworks and a bonfire will be among the major highlights.
Families will be able to enjoy musical groups such as The Slavers, MAG Swing and the Bronx Opera. Other activities will include balloons, “Jeopardy,” face painting, puppet shows, crafts and more.
All of it will be held on Broadway, North Street, St. John Street (at the Episcopal Church), and BOCES’ theater and gym.
Partners-in-Community and the Sullivan County Visitors Association are two of the main sponsors of the event. Other co-sponsors include The Recovery Center, Monticello Housing Authority, CACHE and Sullivan County Community College.
Roberta Lockwood, President of the Sullivan County Visitors Association, said the this year’s celebrations will be more “user-friendly” and “interactive.”
Lockwood believed more area children would be interested due to a contest this year throughout the local schools for the best poster.
Alexandra Hercules, a 7th grader at Liberty, won the contest for best design, beating out hundreds of others.
Lockwood said the theme for this year’s event will be “Community Alive” – with a prime emphasis on unity.

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