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Mark Your Calendar for First Night

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RALEIGH — According to Raleigh police, more than50,000 people attended First Night Tuesday night. The event isRaleigh'sfamily-oriented, alcohol-free end of the year celebration which got underway Tuesday afternoon. All in attendance were there to wind up theevening, and the year, and noisily welcomed 1997 at midnight.

First Night organizers -- and attendees -- were relieved about theweather forecast. Warm temperatures lured record numbersto the downtown event and nary a raindrop fell on the Giant Acorn as it dropped to mark the new year.

The concept of First Night began in Boston in 1976, and has sincespread to 167 cities around the world as a way to welcome the new year andcelebrate the arts at the same time.

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