In an all-new episode of The Business Beat, Steve Jones-D’Agostino, chief pilot of Best Rate of Climb, interviews Howard McGinn, executive director of First Night Worcester, and singer Ayla Brown, who will perform during First Night Worcester 2014. They talk about keeping a community celebration alive in tough times.
As the Telegram & Gazette reported on November 25, “First Night Worcester is saying ‘help’ as it seeks to raise $25,000 to fund its annual New Year’s Eve celebration on December 31 — a Worcester tradition since 1982. “’We are committed to going forward [with the event],’ said First Night Worcester executive director Howard McGinn. “However, the non-profit organization has issued an ‘urgent appeal’ to supporters and friends. “In the appeal, Mr. McGinn said that First Night Worcester has experienced a 50-percent decrease in funding in the last three years. “He noted that many First Nights across the country have been in similar circumstances and were forced to close.”
In response, The Hanover Insurance Group, based in Worcester, offered to match all contributions to First Night Worcester up to $15,000. As of December 12, the date of the interview taping, another Worcester company, whose name has yet to be disclosed, had donated $5,000.
First Night Worcester is a volunteer-driven organization that is funded 100 percent by button sales and the generosity of the Greater Worcester community: businesses, foundations and individuals who provide financial and in-kind support.