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Last Night Santa Cruz in the Metro

About Last Night via Metro Nüz
Nüz: About Last Night

After years of struggling to keep the event afloat, organizers of FIRST NIGHT SANTA CRUZ have finally called it quits, citing a lack of funding and community involvement as the primary reasons. Predictable responses from organizers and city officials abound, but the news elicited a different sort of response from local underground community activist RICO THUNDER, who also helps organize the GUERRILLA DRIVE-IN events.

"When I heard that First Night had finally collapsed in on itself in a corpulent pile," says Thunder, "I thought, of course. Exactly."

Having just returned from BURNING MAN to "a shitload of overwhelming information about Katrina and New Orleans," Thunder was thoroughly disgusted with the federal government in particular, but also government in general.

"Our government cannot and will not keep us safe, happy and free," says Thunder. "I came back feeling like, What the fuck? These are the people we depend on to tell us what we can and can't do? Are we crazy? Our institutions can barely manage their own affairs."

Thunder insists he doesn't hate government officials, but he thinks they're "largely irrelevant in our lives.

"WE make this country. And WE make this city. And WE make our communities. Us. Not a bunch of elected yahoos. We are what make our communities connected and vital and full of life."

"This is our town, our celebration, our night," continues Thunder, "the last night of the year. And the last night that we'd make the mistake of depending on anyone else for our safety, our freedom, our entertainment, our education."

Now, Thunder and various members of the community are organizing LAST NIGHT SANTA CRUZ to fill the void--and they're inviting you and everyone you know to help.

Organizers are describing it as "a New Year's Eve parade of freaks, clowns, gamelan, politics, fire, samba drums, punks, pirates, art, bikes, hippies, art cars, zombies, marching bands, moms, dads, kids and music."

Already, various members of the community are chiming in on chat boards promising participation and support.

"I just think it's a great idea," says one supporter, "to show that you don't need a committee and multiple meetings and an approved budget to have fun on New Year's Eve--just get dressed up and take over. Sounds great to me."

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