Barstool Sports blogger Dave Portnoy says he’s pulling the plug on his popular and much-protested “Blackout” raves at the House of Blues, claiming club security and state liquor agents turned the screws on Wednesday night’s party — and ended up turning away about three-fourths of his paid customers.
“It just doesn’t seem like Boston is friendly to nightlife of our sort, at least,” Portnoy told the Herald. “It goes against everything our brand is trying to do, if we’re doing events where we know kids are spending money and getting turned away.”
Portnoy said Wednesday night’s sold-out shindig, which was geared toward Boston College students, turned sour when security barred drinking-age guests who showed up with booze on their breath or with out-of-state IDs. Out of 2,000 tickets sold, he said, only about 500 ravers got inside.
Three investigators from the state Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission were on hand and confiscated approximately 300 fake IDs, an agency spokesman said. The agents trolled the crowd for underage drinkers and anyone who appeared intoxicated.
“We were there to provide support , apply our expertise and to provide an appropriate level of enforcement,” said Jon Carlisle, a spokesman for the state treasurer’s office, which oversees the alcohol-control commission. A spokesman for Live Nation, which operates the House of Blues, could not be reached for comment.
Portnoy’s seven-year-old blog — whose regular features include rating the attractiveness of female teachers charged with having sex with students — has caught fire with the frat lot nationwide, leading him to stage an ongoing series of dance raves, mostly up and down the East Coast. The $20-a-head dance parties have also drawn feminist protests, with critics saying his posts objectify women and promote a rape culture.
The Herald reported last month that there have been arrests, assaults and drunken incidents at several Blackout events across the country. The tour, which features Chicago-based DJ Dante, returns to Boston for two sold-out shows at the House of Blues on March 30 and April 6.
Portnoy says he plans to honor the two upcoming House of Blues dates currently scheduled — Saturday and April 6 — then move his Massachusetts parties elsewhere.“We did an event in Worcester, and we’d happily go back there,” he said.