Hundreds of partygoers come to Uptown for First Night

by: Jeff Smith Updated:

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CHARLOTTE, N.C. - There were two changes to last night's First Night activities that affected thousands of people who came into Uptown to ring in the New Year.

The smell of a half dozen food trucks filled Tryon Street all day Monday, and hundreds of partygoers took advantage.

For the first time since First Night began, food trucks were allowed inside the perimeter to serve hungry families. Center City Partners said they wanted to help small businesses, while also capitalizing on the growing food truck craze.

"That's the best food you can get at a food truck, I think," said Devin Gordon. "And the music, I hear they're going to do the best songs of all different people. So it all seems like fun to me."

There were plenty of police patrolling the streets. Eyewitness News saw officers on bikes and on foot. Heather Allison -- who drove two hours to celebrate New Year's in Charlotte -- said she felt very safe with so many officers nearby.

"They're always looking and making sure that nothing sketchy or weird is going on," she said.

The city classified First Night as a so-called "Extraordinary Event." Under a new ordinance approved before the Democratic National Convention, items such as backpacks and face-covering scarves or masks were banned.

Eyewitness News, however, did not see any officers question anyone or issue any citations during First Night under the new rules.