Battle of the Balls

City pulls the plug on Carytown New Year's event.

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UPDATED: The city of Richmond has pulled the plug on the Carytown ball raise event, as reported by the Times-Dispatch.

"They used the building permit approach," says Schall-Vess. "They threatened New York Deli with an injunction, then told me I did not have permission to 'build' the ball on top.

A special events coordinator with the city told the Times-Dispatch that Schall-Vess should have obtained a permit for a temporary structure on top of a building, but that no applications were made.

original blog post:

It's supposed to be cold on New Year's Eve.

Weather forecasters are saying the temperatures could drop into the teens. But never fear, there will be plenty of balls.

For those not going to the Brown's Island New Years Eve event with its video ball drop, there will be the continuation of the old ball rise in Carytown, this time from the roof of the New York Deli.

"We aren't making a big deal about it," says Byrd Theatre manager Todd Schall-Vess, creator of the event. "We don't want to compete with Brown's Island, just want to continue the tradition."

Last year, the Carytown ball was raised at Hardywood Park Craft Brewery. Schall-Vess hopes that the ball's return to Carytown this year will create a smaller, community-oriented event for those who live nearby. He can always hope.

So far a building inspector and two police have visited with Schall-Vess about the event, warning him that any extra police presence would be his responsibility.

"This ball rise has happened for eight years . . . seven of those in Carytown, four of those without any sort of party or event surrounding them," says Schall-Vess. ""It seems odd that everyone has forgotten those four years. And after all the effort to continue the tradition last year, why would anyone think it is not happening? "

Organizers of the Brown's Island event have speculated that some 10,000 people will show up to their event.

Of course if you're just not into staring at balls, you could avoid the human smorgasbord and do something more intimate. Lately I've heard a lot of people use some variation of the phrase: "New Year's Eve? No thanks. That's amateur night."

Search your feelings. You know it to be true.

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