Go Magazine

January 2018

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24 NEW YEAR IN THE Manteo business owner, Tod Clissold, wanted the town to celebrate the new year by doing something new — so the downtown area this year will be bubbling with food, entertainment and fireworks. Story by Phyllis Moore STREETS A New Year's Eve street fair party with a fami- ly-friendly atmosphere will usher in 2018 in downtown Manteo this year. Tod Clissold, proprietor of Poor Richards deli/cafe/bar in Manteo, stumbled upon an idea of how to better celebrate the occasion in his community this year. "My kids and I were in Mexico last year for New Year's," he recalled, referencing their vaca- tion to a small island off Cancun. The celebration there was simple but fun — family-friendly activities wrapped a downtown area remarkably similar to their hometown. "My kids were like, 'This is something that would be great in Manteo!'" he said. "When I came back, I went in front of the town commis- sioners and kind of pitched the idea to be the first one that we had done downtown." Response from the community has been posi- tive, he said. "Everybody seemed to latch onto it and be excited about it, and I think, for the most part, we've aimed for it to be family friendly, so we have an early ball drop at 8:30, and we have a lot of stuff to do for the kids, and we have street vendors and bands, and the DJ and then the fireworks will go off at midnight." New Year New World was born out of the need for something different, Clissold said. "I think the big thing is just that everybody's so tired of doing the same old thing, there's just not a lot to do," he said. "It's either go over to somebody's house, have dinner, have drinks, struggle to stay up until midnight and then go to bed after midnight." The decision to wrap events around downtown Manteo seemed to fit — with residents as well as business owners. Partially funded by a grant, the town also chipped in and the rest came from local business- es. "I think the commissioners were a little leery to see exactly how supportive the downtown area would be finan- cially," Clissold said. "It turns out, I think we've gotten close to $10,000 from contributions from the downtown businesses and a lot of in-kind (donations) too, like some of the hotels are giv- ing rooms to band members and stage hands so it's just been a great thing." There is no admission charge and the only cost will be for some of the activities or vendors. The event gets under way mid-afternoon and runs until the traditional time for a New Year's Eve event — midnight. Some bars and restaurants will be staying open later for the occasion. Among the activi- ties going on throughout the evening will be a climbing wall, a mechanical shark (similar to the mechanical bull idea) and all sorts of food options, including Brunswick stew and a black- eyed pea cookoff. Coastal Church will be provid- ing kid-focused activities like a bouncy house. There will be plenty of music throughout, including the headliner for the evening, The Rhondels. The Virginia Beach, Virginia band story continues on page 25

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