Photos: Chi-Town Rising's Wins And Fails

By Tankboy in Arts & Entertainment on Jan 2, 2016 9:13PM

Chi-Town Rising managed to attract a lot of media attention as the city's first major, public New Year's Eve celebration. If you watched the event on TV, you might have even thought the party drew huge crowds. Organizers have yet to release official attendance numbers, but based on aerial shots released by their spokespeople, it appears there wasn't much of a turnout—live camera angles just created the illusion of crowds.

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Crowds were sparse by the music stages and the Hyatt with it's "iconic" star. Courtesy of Nick Ulivieri/Hyatt Gold Passport.

The last-minute decision to charge exorbitant ticket prices for what was presented as a free event can't have helped entice attendees.

The event had other flaws, too. It was preempted by NBC coverage of New York City's Times Square until 11 p.m., and the much-heralded "rising of the star" up one side of the Hyatt delayed the countdown clock by 30 seconds.

On competitor ABC's New Year's Eve broadcast, the hosts also stole the show, per usual, with an outrageous act of PDA; their makeouts have become something of an annual tradition.

Still, the NBC broadcast did finally dethrone ABC 7's coverage in the ratings. According to Robert Feder, Chi-Town Rising had a 17.1 rating and 36 share, while ABC's Countdown Chicago 2016 on ABC-owned WLS-Channel 7 had a 14.2 rating and 30 share, according to Nielsen ratings.

Final verdict: It was a TV success, though it didn't feel like much of party on the ground. Maybe next year.