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CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Preparations are underway in uptown for the city s First Night Charlotte New Year s Eve celebration, and they ve made some changes this year.

Crews are spending all day Friday setting up for the main event which starts at noon. The main stage is one of the first things to go up. It s at South Tryon Street and Levine Avenue of the Arts where the main festivities, including the evening dance shows and the countdown, will take place.

Crews are also putting up tents this year on the green where they say the footprint of First Night Charlotte is centered. Events span from the NASCAR Hall of Fame up to the Levine Avenue of the Arts, so organizers say it s a more compact footprint.

Also organizers moved the Kids Zone from the north side of uptown down to the same area where the evening events will be going on, and that includes the skating rink at the NASCAR Hall of Fame where you can get free skates and pay for skating.

First Night is an alcohol free celebration and organizers say there s so much to do.

There are shows, dance troops, bands, jugglers, any type of performance you could want, all kinds of stuff for kids of all ages. So it's a lot of fun, said Robert Krumbine with Center City Partners.

The Kids Zone starts at noon and goes until 5 p.m. and then they break until 8 p.m. when the evening portion of the celebration begins and goes until midnight. Also new this year is a midnight fireworks show off the rooftop of the Knight Theatre.

Wristbands are $10 for adults and $5 for kids ages 5-12. Kids under five get in for free.

For more information, check out http://firstnightcharlotte.com.


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