Burlington City Arts

MAY 21, 2019

Highlight NYE 2019 Needs Your Ideas

Burlington, VT (May 21, 2019): Burlington City Arts and Signal Kitchen are thrilled to announce the return of Highlight — Burlington’s citywide New Year’s Eve Festival — and the launch of its crowdsourced ideas campaign, “The Bright Idea Project.” 

On New Year’s 2018, Highlight connected with over 6,000 attendees at 35 events in 20 venues across the city; we reached a diverse and wide-ranging audience, and our innovative crowdsourced and people-powered event model kept the citywide festival experience authentic and fresh.  

After learning about First Night’s closing in April 2018, Signal Kitchen and Burlington City Arts came together to reimagine what our citywide NYE celebration could be. In four short months, we developed a new crowdsourced programming model, built a new name and identity, and sourced new partners and sponsors statewide and beyond to support our efforts.

In 2019, Highlight will return with a brand new set of uniquely Vermont experiences — and we need our fellow Vermonters ideas! “The Bright Idea Project” seeks proposals from creative and passionate Vermonters that have an idea for events, installations, and performances that will connect our community across the city this NYE. We’ll select proposals that best fit Highlight’s mission, and then support them with funding, technical assistance, and promotion. We want to celebrate what makes Vermont so special — the people that live here and the fantastic things they do. 

We aim to share and amplify as many unique pieces of Vermont’s culture as we can — whether it’s an artist with an idea for a community-made mural, a nonprofit with a fundraising event, a seasoned event professional with a vision, a tech startup, or anyone in between. Last year’s “Bright Idea Project” winners included an interactive art installation that spanned ECHO Center and Waterfront Park, a larger-than-life fire-dancing performance, an immersive art-and-music takeover at Karma Birdhouse, a hip hop fashion show with Vermont’s own 99 Neighbors at Contois Auditorium and much more!  

Please join us for Highlight 2019 and submit your ideas to the Bright Idea Project. Applications can be downloaded at, or by email at Proposals are open from May 17–July 6.