First Night Talbot 2022, our 28th consecutive annual event, will be its second year as a Virtual Event for us! Can you believe we’re still “rolling under the caution flag” this far along? We didn’t! But to be able to safely present another program of sparkling talent by local and regional artists of all ages, we’re giving the community an Online, over-2-hour Celebration of the Arts, starting at 7 p.m. on New Year’s Eve.
Again this year, we have lots of interesting new performances by artists you may or may not have seen before. We’re planning fast-moving sets of song, dance, and other arts in a variety of venues. This program is guaranteed to please all ages — a wonderful family experience.
Our drug and alcohol-free event was started in Easton in 1994 and has relied on grants from Talbot Arts (with funding provided by Maryland State Arts Council), local sponsorships, and Town of Easton support services, to continue this unique holiday celebration. Created and managed by volunteers from our community, it is meant to celebrate the arts, culture, and traditions of Talbot County.
For that reason, several of the traditions have grown to be the highlights of the night. The Maryland Crab Drop was envisioned and invented by Rich and Suzanne Hood many years ago (inspired by their seeing the “Bermuda Onion” drop); it is now under the care of their son, Lance. Well … that led to our first Mermaid – a giant rolling street puppet which we presented in the Town’s 300th Anniversary Parade! She was created by Dragon Wings puppeteers, Debra Hathaway and Eric Heath. They also did a couple of great workshops with kids to create Sea Creature hand puppets and Fish Hats which each year become a small parade of revelers marching up to the 9pm Crab Drop, known as “Midnight in the Mid-Atlantic”. The last several years, Maggii Sarfaty has created another huge mermaid, a people-parade sized one, as well as more delightful hand-carried Sea Creatures. The parade is led by our favorite bagpiper, Randy Welch, and the crowd gathers in advance of the Countdown to enjoy fire juggling by Cascading Carlos!
Yes! We’re going to film that full performance of the Countdown and Crab Drop to be broadcast at 9pm on New Year’s Eve … from an undisclosed, historic location in Talbot County. The local kids will be our Parade, and we’ve invited a very special friend of theirs to be included via her own video. We hope you and your kids, grandkids, family, friends, and visitors will all be joining us online for the only remaining First Night Celebration in the state of Maryland!
Our underlying theme this year is to Celebrate the Arts, as well as to support and share our Community Talents and Traditions, and to encourage everyone to look forward to a Happy, Healthy New Year 2022!