Media Coverage

Read the latest news about 

Sandwich First Night 2018

First Night Sandwich 'Is A Go' This Year


Here is a bit of holiday cheer: Despite rumors to the contrary, First Night Sandwich is alive and well and ready to rock the village streets this New Year’s Eve, according to the event’s new organizers.

“It’s all pretty much planned, and every slot is filled for vendors and venues,” said Suzanne Chambers, the lead volunteer who stepped up to replace the weary former organizers who called it quits last May. “I have a good committee of about 10 volunteers, and we’ve been working hard.”

The new committee followed the template passed to them by the former organizers, Ms. Chambers said, and many familiar events will be returning on December 31. They include a parade down Main Street; ice sculptures; fairy lights; musical acts; food vendors; and, as a finale, fireworks over Shawme Pond.

There will be changes, however, some of which were necessitated by the new committee members’ late entry into their organizational roles.

Some of the venues from past First Nights—such as the Dan’l Webster Inn, the Sandwich Glass Museum, and the library—will not be participating this year, Ms. Chambers said.

The museum and hotel already have other commitments, Ms. Chambers said. The library is always closed on Mondays and this year New Year's Eve falls on a Monday; however, its parking lot will be available for use.

But new venues have been found, including the Sand Hill Community School, which will host musical acts, and the Deacon Eldred House.

Another new addition this year will be three heating stations—movable fire stations like those used by restaurants—where revelers can warm their hands along the route, Ms. Chambers said.

A fire-eating act, a juggler, and a “disco ball” dancer covered with tiny mirrors will also make appearances.

The organizers are still seeking strong volunteers to march in the Parade of Giants, carrying puppets on their shoulders. They are also hoping to find some food trucks that do not already have other commitments and sponsors to help defray the costs of the fireworks.

Admission buttons—which are collector’s items designed by local artist Robyn Whaples and cost $10 each—are expected to go on sale in the next week.

Tickets will also be sold at the library and at many local stores.

Ms. Chambers said she and the other new organizers could not have pulled off this year’s event without the help and support of the previous group of volunteers.

The night’s events have grown over the years and the scheduling, organizing and fundraising take a lot of work, according to the former organizers.

Many volunteers are needed for the many organizational tasks that make the night so seamless for the audience, according to Denise Dever, the former chairman of the Sandwich First Night committee.

The popular Sandwich event was begun in 2012 by Melinda Gallant and Neila Neary.

The two women teamed up with Paula Johnson, executive director of Sandwich Community Television, as well as other founding volunteers, and served as co-chairmen of the committee for four years, stepping down two years ago. The founders passed the torch to Ms. Dever and other remaining core volunteers.

Ms. Dever, Ms. Johnson and the other former volunteers decided at their May meeting that they were all exhausted and wanted to spend their holidays enjoying family time and doing less work.

“The committee is exhausted, and maybe the event has run its course,” Ms. Johnson said at the time. “Volunteers give up their Christmas and New Year’s and many of us would like to do other things.”

But Ms. Dever passed her “playbook” to Ms. Chambers. It contains information about sponsors, volunteers, scheduling and finances.

Other former volunteers offered to mentor the new organizers and even give them leftover money and supplies.

“Denise and Paula have been wonderful,” Ms. Chambers said.

Nevertheless, it has been a scramble, Ms. Chambers said, adding that next year’s event will run more smoothly and be even more spectacular. It will be the anniversary of the Women’s Suffrage Movement, and that will be the First Night theme.

This year there will be no overall theme, but there will be something for everyone.

“It will be a lot of fun,” Ms. Chambers said. “People will really love it, especially the performances.”

By Patrick Flanary / Contributing Writer

Posted Dec 28, 2017 at 6:00 AMUpdated Dec 29, 2017 at 6:26 AM


New Year’s Eve fanfare returns Sunday to Chatham, Provincetown and Sandwich, where Cape Cod’s three biggest year-end celebrations will ring in 2018.

First Night Sandwich

First Night Sandwich holds its events largely in the center of town, and is known for its holiday “giants,” lighted sculptures designed by Michael Magyar, along Route 6A. This year’s event has expanded to 15 locations to bring in more artists, performers and food vendors.

For the first time, Sandwich Town Hall will be turned into a dance hall, with the chairs cleared and featuring performances by the Senegalese group Mamadou.

Some choices include joining a drum circle at 4 p.m. at St. John’s Episcopal Church (159 Main St.); 5 p.m., songs and stories in the basement of the Sandwich Public Library (142 Main St.), and, back outside, there’s free access to exhibits, ice sculptures and a fairy garden. The Revelers Parade of Giants begins at 8 p.m. and ends with fireworks at Shawme Pond.

“We’re always looking to make it a little bigger and better,” says Dever, who chairs the six-year-old Upper Cape event. But, she adds, the event can only get so big if it’s to remain downtown and walkable.

“A lot of people don’t want to drive on New Year’s Eve,” she says. “And we end early, so you can still go home and do your own traditions.”

This is an excerpt. Read full article here.

Many Favorites Returning For This Year's First Night

December 4, 2017

This year’s First Night Sandwich “Town of Giants” will once again include lighted sculptures created by Michael Magyar, owner of Glass Studio on Cape Cod, into its theme.

The giants, made of rebar and festooned with seasonal lights, are located along Route 6A and in the village. The giants are alight now and will remain lit through New Year’s Eve. The recently printed Sandwich Chamber of Commerce Holly Days Book includes a map of the location of the more than 43 figures that Mr. Magyar has created.

When deciding which acts will be invited to perform at First Night Sandwich, organizers begin by considering what has worked well to attract a crowd.

The committee invited many of its most popular acts back. Among those this year are: The Oysters, a rockabilly band founded by alumni from Sandwich High School. Schuyler Grant with his crooning voice and acoustic guitar will be returning to Beth’s Bakery. When he is not gigging in Manhattan, Chicago, or Boston, music lovers might find him on his boat in Nantucket Sound, a source of musical inspiration for some of his original compositions. Also returning to Beth’s are The Familiars, husband and wife team Manny and Linda Dias, a Cape-based duo of guitar, violin, mandolin, and Irish whistle, featuring folk, fiddle and country music.

Another Cape-based duo is Still Willow with Kim Moberg and Ric Allendorf, a singer-songwriter team on acoustic guitars. The duo will be performing at one of the new venues for First Night: the living room of C.W.’s, the tavern next to the Belfry Inn. They will be followed by Woodhall/Jackson, a folk music duo with Karen Woodhall on vocals and David Jackson on acoustic guitar, a favorite of coffeehouses and blues fests. Finally, at C.W.’s, Carly Tefft returns with her guitar—she is as likely to perform in Boston or Nashville. Ms. Tefft is a singer-songwriter, blending folk, rock and country/pop. She was widely spotlighted when she composed “Keep on Running,” an anthem for Boston Strong at the Boston Marathon. Finally, at the Dan’l Webster Inn in the Jarves Room, look for Tall Richard and The Nightowls, a blues rock foursome with guitar, bass, drums, and harmonica. The FNS Committee is thrilled that all these performers will be back at Sandwich Village to share their musical talent December 31!

First Night buttons are good for all outdoor and indoor venues on New Year’s Eve, Saturday, December 31, from 4 to 9 PM. Buttons are available for sale at: Beth’s Bakery & Cafe, Café Chew, Cape Cod 5, Dan’l Webster Inn, Heart of Stone, Splash Stationers, Sandwich Public Library, both Sandwich-area Stop & Shops, and Titcomb’s Bookshop. Buttons are $10 per adult, and $6 per child (3 to 12 years old). Buttons can also be purchased online at

Listen to our November interview with Matt Pitta of here

Getting Ready For First Night Sandwich

November 18, 2017

Sandwich will celebrate its sixth annual First Night Sandwich event on Sunday, December 31, from 4 to 9 PM. This New Year’s Eve event is a non-alcoholic family festival of the arts with multicultural activities, musical presentations, and live performances, located in venues both inside and outdoors, in and around Sandwich Village.

A Reveler’s Parade will be at 8 PM. First Night buttons will soon be for sale online and at area merchants. There will be ice sculptures, lighted giants in the village and along Route 6A, children’s crafts, a fairy garden, jazz, blues, food vendors, storytelling, a resolution wall, cannon fire, giant sparklers and fireworks.

A 2018 First Night button is required for all indoor venues, but is not required for outdoor events. Buttons are $10 per person and children 3 and younger are admitted for free. The finale will be at Sandwich Town Hall, following the parade.

Registration and participation information is available at