Published on January 12th, 2015 | by Millennium Magazine Staff0
Famously Hot New Year 2015 Biggest Ever
Landmark event breaks records for attendance and private sponsorship
COLUMBIA, S.C.—The numbers are in and it’s official, Famously Hot New Year drew a record-breaking crowd this year filling Main Street with roughly 28,000 attendees from 27 states, four countries, including Japan, to ring in the New Year right here in Columbia.
Already one of the largest events in the Southeast, Famously Hot New Year also set a new record for private support with more than 30 major event sponsors like BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina, Aflac and Colonial Life contributing more than $281,000 in private dollars and in-kind support allowing this year’s event to come in under budget for a second time, a major accomplishment for any volunteer-run, free event, especially an event this young.
Other factors critical to the event’s success included Richland County’s decision to significantly increase their support for the event, totaling $100,000, and a new partnership with The COMET, which saw 650 riders take advantage of park-and-ride services. All told, public, private and in-kind sponsorship totaled to $511,500, which is more than enough to cover the event’s $433,000 as well as any unforeseen expenses.
“When you have an event that brings together 28,000 people of all different races, genders, beliefs and backgrounds from all across the nation and the world, then you have something really special,” said Columbia Mayor Steve Benjamin. “That’s what this celebration is all about and we couldn’t be more proud to see it continue to grow and grow responsibly.”
In its fourth year, as always, Famously Hot New Year 2015’s free street party featured live music on stage by major national acts, framed by the South Carolina State House. This year, the #FHNY celebration was headlined by The O’Jays, and opening acts included MisterWives and local reggae/rock band Lefty at the Washout.
In addition to the VIP Absolut Crescent Lounge, the free concert, Main Street Ice and a midnight fireworks show, Famously Hot New Year 2015 saw expanded event happenings and details for attendees to enjoy much of the day on New Year’s Eve, including:
*The Famously Hot Main Street Crit: This spectator-friendly, successful race teamed up with FHNY 2015 with a Kids Fun Run at 3 p.m., a 5K at 3:30 p.m. and an Elite 8K (with an $8,000 purse) with professional runners at 4:45 p.m.
*City of Columbia Parks & Recreation’s WOW New Year’s Eve Carnival offered free admission to games and rides, including a Ferris wheel, for kids of all ages from 5 – 11 p.m.
*Famously Hot New Year and The COMET joined to offer a shuttle service with extended operating hours to transport Famously Hot New Year attendees safely and easily to FHNY by operating 12 routes and picking up and dropping off attendees at park-and-ride lotsthroughout the Midlands.
For more information, visit FamouslyHotNewYear.com. Follow Famously Hot New Year:
About FAMOUSLY HOT NEW YEAR
Set on Columbia’s Main Street with the South Carolina State Capitol as the backdrop, Famously Hot New Year is South Carolina’s largest free New Year’s Eve party. In its fourth year, the celebration encompasses a live outdoor concert by national headlining bands, a colossal midnight fireworks display unrivaled in the two Carolinas, a VIP party, family fun, regional food and drink, a specialty race and more in the days surrounding the New Year in Columbia. Famously Hot New Year 2014 drew a diverse crowd of tens of thousands of guests from the Southeast and beyond.
Official event hashtag: #FHNY