Jonathan Gibb reviews CROSSWALK, DONT WALK’s newest event, which premiered Wednesday, 17th September at the Kinkell Byre. See our preview of the event here

 

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Planning something new and completely different to anything that’s been held before means, by necessity, that you’re not going to be sure how things will turn out. This Wednesday at Kinkell, the mistiness of the afternoon made it very difficult to see anything greater than five metres in front of yourself, but it was crystal clear that CROSSWALK 2014 had people talking.

Ticket sales, unfortunately, did not accurately predict the actual – and fairly low – guest turnout. However, I didn’t find this too much of a problem; there was never any need to queue at the bar, and it was the only event I’ve been to at Kinkell where I didn’t lose my friends while travelling between areas. Describing the atmosphere is tricky: Wuthering Heights meets an affluent friend’s 21st Birthday at Kinkell with a dubious funfair.

 

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Candy floss, popcorn and facepaint was, as promised, free and plentiful. A sudden and brief wasp infestation made eating it outside unintentionally more thrilling than the funfair itself. The said, attractions that claimed to “propel you into new levels of exhilaration” were sadly absent; however, the drop tower was quite a lot of fun, and I never really felt bored. In true May Ball style, queues to use it were around 10-times larger than those found around the bar. The promised fun was, however, definitely found in the inflatable assault course, which was undoubtedly a hit. Tensions and tempers were high from the intense rivalry spawned by the Coconut Shy.

 

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Front of House decorated the venue very well, successfully setting the theme. From a tactical perspective, it was clever to cordon-off half of the dance floor to make it more intimate – if this hadn’t been done it would have been disastrous. The music on offer was great, and it was a bit of a shame that the DJs were playing to an empty barnyard until the last few hours, when things really picked up. Sadly, many choose to walk in the direction of the scrumptious The Buffalo Food Truck instead of dancing.

 

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I applaud DONT WALK for trying something different, as it certainly needed a complete revamp and change in direction. The excellent raffle prizes justified the ticket costs, and the lower volume of sales meant that the odds of winning were pretty high. There are very few events at Kinkell where you have the opportunity to actually hold a conversation without damaging your vocal chords, and CROSSWALK 2014 certainly provided a chilled and fun atmosphere that also made a charitable impact.

 

 

Jonathan Gibb

 

Photography by Liz Nicholls