(Photo by Phil Riggan, Richmond.com)
Reading this morning’s Times Dispatch article about the NYE ball rising in Carytown rubs me the wrong way. RVA has a complex of hosting really fun “community” events BUT when they get too big, too popular, or too crowded with uninvited people, they scale them back or cancel them all together.
I may be wrong but just last year wasn’t there all this back and forth about Carytown getting too crowded? The Carytown Association not being able to pay for security..so on and so on. So then everything moved last minute to Hardywood – all good. I was disappointed last year but understood some of that. But now since the good folks at RVA Mag, Tony Harris, Jimmy Budd, and others (that I know I’m leaving out) have decided to take a major leadership role and host a huge free party on Brown’s Island for NYE – they are hoping for 10K – now Carytown is once again raising the ball again on NYE at NY Deli. What? And it’s cool because it’s small. What? I’m not with that.
This has the feel of classic RVA exclusion. I’m thinking about the whole First Fridays fiasco when they tried to shut it down because it was again too crowded with uninvited guest. To be honest, the Richmond Times-Dispatch probably shouldn’t have printed the article — we don’t want it to actual catch on…right. Again, I’m open to debate on this but my initial read is cynical because it feels like classic RVA exclusion. I’m not with that.
Richmond need to figure out ways how to handle growth and inclusion. Shutting down popular events and then restarting them when it’s scaled back is not the answer. I’m very proud of the people leading the effort on Brown’s Island and a bit disappointed in this last ditch effort in Carytown to raise the ball. But I could be wrong…tell me why in the comments. #WESEEIT