WASHINGTON CITY – New Year’s eve this year may have rung in a new tradition for Southern Utah’s youth, judging from the success of “The Big Event” at the Washington City Community Center Monday night.
The Heart of Dixie, teamed with Cherry Creek Radio’s B92.1 and Washington city to ring in the New Year with a huge party, featuring four entertainment areas: Kid Land offering bounce houses and face painting for the kids, Party Central offering a dance zone with local DJs mixing today’s best music for the teens, The Commons for mingling offering a broadcast of Dick Clark’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest for mom and dad, plus the Chow House offering food for the whole family. In sum, the event was loud and boisterous, much to the taste of the younger set – who comprised a super majority of those in attendance; and not so much to some who were looking for a different and more adult-oriented kind of gathering to substitute for the First Night and Twilight to Midnight New Years Eve events put on by the City of St. George in years past.
“This event was mostly for teenagers, music if you call it that, was too loud, so loud you couldn’t even dance,” Norrene Cox Covington posted on St. George News Facebook, “reminds me of what some would call, music for a RAVE? party. If you wanted to be with the ‘older group’ would have had to pay more money to be upstairs. Wait in line was about an hour, in the cold. Should of had more than 2 people at table. Cost per person at the door, was $15 and up, too much money for this.”
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Videocast by Sarafina Amodt and Chris Caldwell, St. George News
But, The Heart of Dixie organization aims at meeting the taste of youth. “We are here to give you something really fun and new to do with all your friends!” promises its website, stating it will will provide “positive social experiences for the youth of our community … (to) make you dance, make you smile, keep you safe and BLOW YOUR MIND!” The Big Event delivered on its promises – at least from the perspective of teens.
Total attendance exceeded 1,500 according to Heart of Dixie’s New Year’s morning Facebook post, acknowledging the need for more points of entry next time around. Lines were long by 8 p.m. and temperatures were 30 degrees and falling.
“There’s just so many (people) coming through,” volunteer Claudia Kennington said. “I have no idea how many tickets I’ve sold.”
“This event was incredible!” Destiny Cooper, 17, said. “I’ve had an amazing time.”
Next event on calendar for Heart of Dixie is a neon paint party aptly called “Glow” on Jan. 18 at the Washington County Fairgrounds. For those who like being splashed with color – for example, those who enjoyed Color me Rad – this might be just your speed as its poster quips, “Come in white, leave in color.”
Many have long cried for more events appealing and enjoyable for Dixie’s youth of many ages, Heart of Dixie is making an effort to provide just that.
Happy New Year to all.