RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — The Science Museum of Virginia blamed a “double technical malfunction” for the reason behind last year’s issues during its annual Noon Year’s Eve celebration.
The malfunction prevented guests from enjoying the event’s grand finale: thousands of bouncy balls being released from a giant metal ball that was suspended above the crowd. It also prompted the museum to offer a money-back guarantee to guests if the malfunction occurred again the following year.
On Tuesday, another malfunction kept 2,020 bouncy balls inside the giant metal ball, spoiling the fun for the second year in a row.
“We’ve tested it again and again,” Jennifer Guild, a spokeswoman for the museum, told 8News. With a malfunction impacting the event two years in a row, Guild said it could be time to retire the giant metal ball.
A statement from the museum ahead of this year’s event explained that additional measures were put in place to ensure the balls would drop and that guests would be getting their money back “if the 2,020 balls do not fall.”
“We know guests have come to expect the unexpected with us, but not releasing the balls last year wasn’t what we had in mind,” Chief Wonder Officer Richard Conti said in the statement. “This year we’ve added more fail safes and we’re so confident that the policy is if the balls don’t drop, you get your money back.”
The museum had only 2,500 tickets for the event, which cost $15.50 for adults, $13,50 for youth and seniors and $10 for preschool-age children. Tickets were free for museum members and children under two.
Guests looking for refunds have been told to bring their receipt to the museum’s guest services department.
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