Monday, October 21, 2013

Suppose they came to a party that didn't happen?

There are lessons in college that aren't taught on campus, but should.

Take for example what happened Saturday night in my home area. A small-time promoter, Boss Cross Entertainment, had supposedly booked a huge party that would occupy Bingo Green at the Uncle Sam Atrium as part of Homecoming Weekend for the University at Albany. A smaller party was taking place down the street at Kokopellis, a hole-in-the-wall nightclub, situated a few doors from my home, and had been promoted via a sandwich chalkboard on the sidewalk in front of the club.

So what happened? In the words of an other-worldly philosopher, one Gordon Shumway, utter chaos.

500 UAlbany students were dropped off at the Atrium around 9:30, only to find the venue was closed. No one knew why the party had been cancelled so suddenly, and at the very last second. DJ TGIF, according to the Albany Times-Union, tweeted that the show had been called off. He'd been one of  two DJ's scheduled to work the show, and, like the students, had no clue as to why the party had been cancelled. So, the students, looking for someplace to go, made their way to Kokopellis. One problem. You had to have a ticket for their party to get in, and not everyone who had a ticket for this event was able to get in amidst all the confusion & chaos.

Fortunately, it didn't end in violence, though Troy Police, taking no chances, called in backup from other agencies, and three hours later, the buses returned to take the students back to Albany.

The Times-Union, having obtained a promotional flier for the Atrium event, contacted one of the people affiliated with Boss Cross. He wouldn't say why the party had been cancelled, but acknowledged that the students had paid in advance. The first 100 tickets were sold for $10 each.

Uh-oh. If that doesn't sound like a scam, then what else could it be?

According to Troy Police, a SUNY-Albany rep said that the show had no connection with the school, which didn't promote or sponsor it. Right now, Boss Cross staff aren't facing criminal charges. Yet. Something about this just doesn't feel right. I get that there've been issues between the city of Albany and one of its longest-running venues, the Washington Avenue Armory, which would've been a more logical location than a bingo hall across the river. Would RPI even sanction a student event outside of Troy? I highly doubt it, so the only thing I can figure is that, yes, those kids were scammed. Until we learn more details, the worst case scenario may just be the only one.

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