MONTEREY, Calif. - First Night Monterey 2018 celebrates its 25th Anniversary with food, performances, arts and crafts and dancing.
Patrons and first timers crowded the streets of downtown Monterey for most of the day into the New Year.
Former Mayor of Monterey, Dan Albert, kicked off the evening at Colton Hall where there were drumming performances and tons of kids activities. Albert was Mayor when First Night began and says he didn't know what to expect at the time, "We didn't know whether it was going to be 300 people, 5000, but it was about 10,000 people here the first night, it was overwhelming and it's been a success ever since."
The event is spread out through Downtown Monterey with most of the venues and activity on Alvarado Street.
Albert says each year the goal is to have a family environment that everyone can enjoy. Visitor Christopher Francis says that's one of the reasons he keeps coming back, "I love the atmosphere, I love that it's very colorful, there's so many things to see." Francis travels to Monterey each year from Tuscon, Arizona.
Another visitor, Jackie Holmes, says she and her husband stumbled upon the event a few years back when they were visiting Monterey. They now live in the Central Valley, but came back to Monterey this year just for First Night.
For more information on the event, or information on how to volunteer, click here.