On a typical New Year’s Eve, Downtown Johnstown would be booming with carriage rides, live entertainment in nearby churches, children’s programming at the Cambria County Library, and fireworks.
With COVID-19 this year, organizers with Celebration Johnstown decided not to cancel the event, but modify it.
“I don’t know anyone that’s not excited for 2020 to be over. It definitely has been a trying year. Doing an in-person event was just not in the cards,” said Lauren Lazzari, Co-Chairwoman of Celebration Johnstown.
So, they’re planning to ring in the new year virtually.
Local musicians, ranging from Rosie and the Jammers to the Johnstown Symphony, will still perform but this year, the audience will be watching from their living rooms.
“Johnstown is so blessed with so many great entertainers. They were able to volunteer their time to do some amazing recordings that they’ll be sharing with you that evening,” said Lazzari.
You can begin watching December 31st at 6:30 pm on the Celebration Johnstown Facebook and Youtube, or on Atlantic Broadband (channel 9).
The fireworks display will still be happening beginning at 9:00 pm New Year’s Eve, and people can socially distance throughout Johnstown to watch.
Organizers say the best places to view the show are near the Johnstown Post Office, anywhere along Washington Street, or from the top of the Inclined Plane.
“They do an amazing job of a good balance of fireworks that will just light up the Johnstown sky,” Lazzari said.
Celebration Johnstown will also have a Christmas lights contest on their Facebook page to keep the community engaged, and to say farewell to a year unlike any other.
“For this year, we’re just keeping everybody safe and healthy, so we can all celebrate together next year,” Lazzari said.
Firework sponsors: CFA Wessel & Co., Somerset Trust Co., Vision 2025, Macaroni Kid, Learning Lamp, JHA, 1st Summit Bank, Alma Lodge #523, Family Dentistry, Carpenter Financial Services, and individual donors.
Celebration Johnstown has a fund set up through the Community Foundation for the Alleghenies.