US public unimpressed by millennium extravaganza plansgreenspun.com : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread
US public unimpressed by millennium extravaganza plans
WASHINGTON, Nov 26 (AFP) -
Extravagant millennium celebrations across the United States have been either cancelled or scaled down, as organizers fear they might give a millenium party, only to find not many people came.
The producers of a millennium show in Manhattan featuring Aretha Franklin, Sting and Andrea Bocelli said Tuesday they are looking for a smaller venue because tickets, initially priced at 1,000-2,000 dollars, were finding few buyers. The tickets are now on sale for a less ambitious 75-375 dollars.
In Washington, organizers of a major New Year's Eve event on the Mall, the esplanade which stretches between the Lincoln Memorial and Capitol Hill, are now planning for only 100,000 people -- even though it is a free event. Two months ago, the organizers were talking of as many as 600,000 people attending.
President Bill Clinton and his wife Hillary are to join the crowd on the Mall, and the organizers have promised other "surprise guests" as a Stephen Spielberg film depicting the century's major events is projected onto three giant screens.
And on the West Coast, a 'Los Angeles Millennium Show' planned for December 31 was cancelled in mid-October because of lackluster ticket sales, even with a price range of 55-75 dollars, event organizers said.
High-class restaurants, where diners go to see and be seen, are not faring much better. The National Restaurant Association said Tuesday that its members are so far only half-booked for the closing night of the year. And a spokesman for the New York Restaurants Association said that some of the city's most exclusive restaurants are reporting a disappointing level of New Year's Eve bookings.
Extravagant galas seem to be losing out to the American public's desire to see the New Year in with family and friends.
A Time magazine poll found that 72 percent of those surveyed don't plan any hard partying. As further confirmation that consumers are not planning to splash out, 32 percent said they would spend up to 50 dollars celebrating, 29 percent said 51-300 dollars and only 8 percent said more than 300 dollars.
Sixty-eight percent said they wanted to spend the evening among family and friends.
And when the clock strikes midnight, 62 percent plan to kiss a loved one, 56 percent will watch television, 35 percent will be drinking champagne, while 20 percent hope to be making love.
-- Mr. Nugget the popcorn bag (email@example.com), November 27, 1999
"while 20 percent hope to be making love.
Ahhh yes...all those starving pregnant mothers and Septmember "Millenial Babies"
-- austin (firstname.lastname@example.org), November 27, 1999.
And as anyone who's traveled the U.S. knows,the U.S. public is composed largely of status quotent sheep who think that they recieved a quality education and that the U.S.is the best place to live because television told them so.
-- zoobie (email@example.com), November 27, 1999.
The American public may not be stocking up on rice and beans and cold cash, but this phenomena of $1000 a seat New Year's Evil parties going wanting is a sure sign JQP is UNeasy about the potential for the Y2K bug to bring disruptions at the stroke of midnight. Surely, were Y2K bugs not an issue, the world would be flush with party fever that night.
Obviously not going to be the case.
-- zen angel (nopartyuntil2001@Y2K.com), November 27, 1999.
Hey, what about that big shindig at the Egyptian pyramids? Here's the scoop from their website:
The Official Party of the Year 2000
Last year it was 10 degrees with wind-chill in Times Square. In Egypt, they were hitting golf balls and snorkeling in the Red Sea. Where would you rather be?
At sunset on December 31, 1999, Millennium Society guests will arrive from their hotels at the Pyramids. Dressed in blacktie and ball gowns, plans call for our guests to travel by camel the final stretch across desert sand dunes to a huge tent on the desert bluff overlooking all three of the great Pyramids. Plans includes candelabras. Champagne. White tablecloths. Live music and side performances throughout the night. A roaring bonfire outside beneath the full moon.
The Pyramids are within ready reach of the tent across a dramatic stretch of sand. The Sphinx itself is nestled amidst the Pyramids, overlooking the "Sound & Light Show" stage you've seen in the James Bond film The Spy Who Loved Me. Nearby, at sunset, on the plateau that's featured concerts by the Grateful Dead and Frank Sinatra, the French rock composer Jean-Michel Jarre (he's topped the charts with "Oxygene" and "Equinoxe" ... it rocks, danceable but also moonlit Pyramids surreal ... think Enya, Loreena McKennitt/the Mummer's Dance, Vangelis' music from Chariots of Fire) and other performers are producing a 12-hour Millennium Concert and laser light show. From dusk to dawn, televised around the world, our guests will be part of this spectacular celebration.
Midnight at the Pyramids
At midnight the Egyptian government is planning an extravaganza they hope will rival the Ball Drop in Times Square. The Great Pyramid of Cheops is actually missing its top peak -- it's as if the point has broken off. The Ministry of Culture is recapping the missing peak in gold, unveiling it and lighting it at the stroke of midnight -- something like when President Reagan re-lighted the Statue of Liberty's torch via a laser with an explosion of fireworks on July 4th, 1986. Your party, like the concert, will continue until the sun dawns across the desert and strikes the new golden peak on January 1, 2000. Hot air balloons plan to take flight as the sun comes up. Your tent will feature a candlelit buffet dinner, and a sunrise champagne breakfast as the Year 2000 dawns.
"The World Millennium Charity Ball will begin at six p.m. Greenwich time ... at the Great Pyramid of Cheops, one of the Seven Wonders of the World. The organizers are serious."
-- Esquire magazine, January 1984
"... the Millennium Society is preparing for a New Year's Eve that is a little way off. December 31, 1999. With global crises and a growing hole in the ozone layer ... threatening civilization as we know it, this, then, is a society for the consummate optimist."
-- The Washington Post, December 31, 1986
One little problem, however. The webpage boasts, "It happens under a full moon in the Egyptian desert." Folks, don't buy into all the hype. Here are the official full moons for December and January:
Lunar Phases Data Location Name Egypt, Cairo Coordinates 0310 14' 00" E 300 03' 00" N Full moon Local time 12/22/1999 08:31 PM Julian date 2451535.229787 Full moon Local time 01/21/2000 07:40 AM Julian date 2451564.694475
-- Zach Anderson (firstname.lastname@example.org), November 27, 1999.