Millennium Dome, "River of Fire" and giant Ferris wheel sputter during New Years party
London threw a party and many who attended wished they had stayed home and watched other worldwide celebrations on TV. After building a Millennium Dome, a giant Ferris wheel and spending 750 Million pounds, the London party pooped out and left those in attendance with a New Year party they would rather forget.
Where to start with the problems facing London's Millennium party. How about the Millennium Dome, it was washed in controversy since the giant structure was beginning to take shape. Many said it looked like a giant mushroom, others just thought it was just plain big and ugly and those who built it said just wait until New Year's Eve. The wait is over and the Millennium Dome lived up to its critic's worst expectations.The Scottish Daily Record calls it the "Domes Day Scenario". Others just call it a big waste of money.
The Millennium Dome hosted a private party on New Year's Eve. Those invited initially felt lucky, in the end they felt cursed. If you had a ticket to the Millennium Dome then your evening was probably spent waiting in line. There were lines to pick up tickets, lines at security screens and even lines to get a glass of champagne. All 10,000 guests had to pass through one x-ray security camera- translation long wait. If you managed to get through that line you were given a ticket for a glass of champagne at midnight- translation long line to get champagne. In fact, many people were left to toast the year 2000 with a ticket not a glass of champagne.
London's other great Millennium landmark-the London Eye-was also a great disappointment. The giant wheel, sponsored by British Airways, was supposed to take 250 prize-winners on an inaugural ride. Those winners never got their ride on the giant Ferris wheel, but they did get a ride on a boat. The wheel failed last-minute safety tests and wasn't allowed to operate as planned. The prize-winners got a boat party on River Thames and a free plane ticket. The London Eye is expected to open until February now.
Part of the New Year celebration meant Prime Minister Tony Blair was to lift the switch to start the wheel and send off laser lights. The Prime Minister flipped the switch all right, it was an empty wheel and the "London Eye" turned so slowly that it appeared to be almost stationary.
As if that wasn't enough, there's more. The "river of fire" was no fire at all just a small spark and if you blinked you missed the much-promoted event. A 200-foot jet of flame was supposed to streak down the river at midnight. Millions who waited on the riverbank never saw a thing. Spectators say it just never happened. However, organizers insist the "river of flames" went off without a hitch.
"I saw it and I was blown away. It was bigger than Ben Hur."said Robert McDermott, who designed the display.
Funny how McDermott was able to see what millions of others on the riverbank or at home watching television could never see.
While organizers continue to call the New Year party a success those who were there continue to disagree. Many say those who planned the extravagant event left out one ingredient when planning the party; Fun.
Source: The Scottish Daily Record
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