Churchill Spring Ball

SASKIA GOLDMAN takes a cheeky bite of Churchill’s big apple. See how it tastes…

ball casino Churchill ents food May Ball May Week Music new york roll deep saskia goldman spring

New York

10th February 2012, £77

Now, I don’t know about you, but when I hear ‘Spring Ball’ I imagine green grass, sunshine, pastel shades and a lot of booze. I pictured myself gliding across lawns and prancing nymph-like, between ents, while gleefully double-fisting my lurid pink drinks.

But actually, I’m thoroughly glad Churchill wasn’t just a boozified Austen novel, because the silent disco wasn’t invented then, and neither was Lazer Quest.

On entry, I feared for a second I’d fallen prey to some elaborate practical joke: the place was empty. Security was as loose as my morals by the end of the night, the dance floor was sparsely populated and I turned to my date in shock. However, we ventured further and discovered a myriad of entertainments to keep even attention-deficit me amused for hours.

We filled up on some ‘Wholesome’ Falafel (deeming it the perfect antidote to some subsequent unwholesome activity in the ball pit) and made our way to the casino. Churchill’s casino was great, as was the addition of a masseuse and a psychic in the corner, despite the fact he refused to predict my future, claiming his shift was over (I’m convinced he just didn’t want to be the one to break the bad news.)

The fun continued outside, where there were yummy things like crepes and popcorn to keep you warm as you braved the elements to cross the icy lawn to the Lazer Quest tent. The bouncy castle sat forlorn and unloved in the cold, but along with the cool double-swingy-things, you could see a real effort had been made to keep people occupied.

After things got a bit intense in the ball pit (I don’t want to talk about it) I found the music was also surprisingly enjoyable, with a special mention needed for What the Folk, who, despite technical difficulties gave a great performance.

Apparently I got a shout-out, but by this point I was far too drunk to notice, and happily boogied the night away. Roll Deep, although doing a very short set, weren’t phased by the wide open space in front of them on the dance floor, and instead focused on engaging with the few dozen very enthusiastic people at the front.

After going to two New York themed balls this year, the only thing that stood out as lacking at Churchill were the decorations. While the large pictures of NYC scenes were great for the classic ‘Hey, me and Oli went to New York!’ type photos, the huge, hand-painted Broadway signs at Selwyn Snowball in Michaelmas put these decs to shame.

Nevertheless, this may not have been what I imagined from a Spring ball, but it also wasn’t what I’d imagined from Churchill. The ents really made the night, as did the fajitas, and despite it feeling a bit empty at times, I was pretty impressed. I also plan to go to Lazer Quest in the very near future.

Food and Drink:

 Wow Factor:

Value for Money:

 Star attraction: Great entertainments

Biggest turn-off: Underpopulated spaces

READ our review of last year’s ball.