City Desk

D.C. Snowball Fight Organizer: Not Expecting Police But “They’re More Than Welcome”


So far, we've heard of at least three snowball fights planned for tomorrow in the District. One near Randle Circle in Southeast (noon), another in a field near the New York Avenue Metro station in Northeast (1 p.m.), and a third on the National Mall (3 p.m.).

Given what happened during D.C.'s last big snow at D.C.'s last snowball fight—remember all those anarchists?—we thought we'd ask Rhys Gerholdt, executive director of CarbonfreeDC, who is helping organize the one in NE, a few questions. Because all of these snowball fights seem awfully suspicious.  

City Paper: In publicizing your event, you said, “While some folks will be hunkered down in their houses clutching their canned goods, CarbonfreeDC invites you to make the best of it by getting together to have a glorious day of snowman making and snowball fights.” What is the real purpose of this snowball fight?

Rhys Gerholdt: The real purpose of the snowball fight is to enjoy the winter as opposed to being afraid of it and to celebrate snow before climate change makes it go by the wayside. Before climate change hampers snowball-making for years to come.

CP: What, exactly, is your definition of a snowball fight?

RG: When people come outside and make balls of snow and toss them at each other?

CP: Do you think snowball fights and anarchy are synonymous?

RG: Only if you want them to be. They can be good family fun. I don’t think anarchy is necessarily good family fun.

CP: You have planned your snowball fight for a “large field.” Don't you think it'd be better to have it at a major intersection like 14th and U NW?

RG: Um, I think that we’ll stay out of the major crowd areas and cop-patrol areas down here. [This location] also allows us to have bigger snowballs and bigger snowmen. My hope is to make giant caterpillars.

CP: Caterpillars?

RG: Sometimes you make the balls too big to actually stack them on top of each other.

CP: Do you know if anyone is going to bring weapons of any sort?

RG: No, I don’t know.

CP: Are you expecting the police?

RG: I’m not expecting the police, but if they want to come and throw snowballs, they’re more than welcome.

Gerholdt is not planning to set any snowball fight world records here; he’ll be happy if 30 or more people show up.

But, he added, “It might snowball."

Photo by Darrow Montgomery

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  1. #1

    -5 for the pun
    +5 for the organizational skills
    -20 for suggesting snow is going away

    I trust CP is going to be at all three locations breaking down the field, reporting on casualties, bunker locations, and avenues of attack. Better yet, head over to the Pentagon and ask them if they know about this.

  2. #2
  3. #3

    Hopefully River East will really represent with our snowball fight!

  4. #4

    It's encouraging that people seem to be choosing large open parks/fields for these events. No reason to have a sequel of 14th & U debacle. The cops handled that one very badly, and some of the participants didn't behave well, either. Hope everyone has fun and stays safe. Let the battle begin!

  5. #5

    There's one at Dupont Circle at 2.

  6. #6

    The mayor and DDOT Director Gabe Klein have asked D.C. residents to stay off the streets period, because it's going to be a white out later on tonight. The D.C. area is epecting up to 30 inches of snow.

    One would think, these people would keep their asses home and read a book, watch a movie, have sex, etc.

  7. #7

    WARD4DC, I don't think many people are going to be driving to these snowball fights, and they're tomorrow, not tonight.

  8. #8

    snowball with guns in Ward4 first thing tomorrow morning!!!

  9. #9

    D.C. Mayor Adrian M. Fenty (D) is urging motorists and pedestrians to stay off city streets tonight because snowfall rates could exceed 3 inches an hour.

    At an 11:00 a.m. storm briefing in Logan Circle, Fenty noted the city could approach its all-time record snowfall of 28 inches, recorded in 1922.

    Why is it so difficult for some people to stay inside during this winter storm with a possible 30 inches of snow? Is this a white thing?

    Done, you will not see blacks in Ward 4 Washington, D.C. out on the streets tomorrow in this bad weather and lot's of snow falling. Yes, I wish law abiding D.C. residents could carry guns on the streets of D.C. to protect themselves from people throwing snowballs at you. I can assure you, drug dealers, prostitutes, and thugs will not be out in this weather. Is it so bad to stay inside and read a book, have sex, watch a good movie, enjoy your family, wife, husband, partner, mate?

  10. #10

    P.S. If the people I mentioned are out and about on tomorrow in a major snow storm with a possible total of 30 inches, they should be committed into Saint Elizabeths Hospital for the mentally ill.

  11. #11

    There's a fight at 14th and U at noon.

  12. #12

    After I'm done shoveling my walk (and those of a few elderly neighbors), we're going sledding.

  13. #13

    The great thing about Al Gores global warming is it can be whatever you want it to be. Too hot? Global warming is the cause. Too cold? Global warming again. Too much rain, too little rain? Global warming once again.

    I refuse to be lectured by a man that lives in a mansion, rides in limos and takes private jets all over the world telling me I pollute too much. FYI in 2006 Al Gores electric and gas heating bill was almost $30,000 for his mansion. Hardly a man to lecture us on reducing a carbon footprint.

    Hardly the home of a man concerned about reducing pollution. What say all you Kool aid drinking global warming theorists on here?

  14. #14

    It will be silly to drive about the city tonight/tomorrow. If you get stuck, there will be nobody available for hours to rescue you. Stay at home, relax, do "family time". Let the city workers attack this storm without the added impediment of unnecessary traffic.

  15. #15

    The same goes for people walking in the streets, stay home.

  16. #16

    Yes, it would be terrible to be stranded in the middle of Dupont Circle, wandering blindly miles from civilization. I'm not planning on going out any time soon, but I don't understand why some people are so annoyed at the idea that someone somewhere might be having fun during this rare event.

  17. #17



  18. #18

    I am going to find me a horror or Vampire movie on Comcast to watch. Who in their right mind want to go out in a blizzard and have a snowball fight? I know it's hard for some people who's single and gay to be alone for several days locked up in their homes/apartments, but enjoy this time for yourself. When you came into the world, you were alone and when you die, you will be all alone. Being around a bunch of people isn't all that. Take it from me, I should know. I have lived for over 500 years.

  19. #19



  20. #20

    Why is that NOODLEZ? Are people on DCIST lonely, gay, and alone? People need to get over being by themselves. Being married are in a relationship with a man or woman is overrated. Take it from me, I know. Enjoy yourselves and life alone. Most people living with someone are unhappy.

  21. #21

    Correction: Being married or in a relationship with a man or woman is overrated. Miss Fenty is in a relationshop and the poor thing is miserable.

  22. #22

    There is a snowball fight at noon on 14th & U. Thats where ill be.

  23. #23

    Jamal, the 3rd District will be there to arrest your ass and any other idiot who's at 14th & U Streets, NW throwing snowballs. I can assure, the Watch Commander is aware or your tactics and we are paying attention. Stay home and off the streets. What's so hard about staying at home with your family?

  24. #24


  25. #25

    Ward4~ there is nothing wrong with hunkering down. There is also nothing wrong with going for a walk or a guns-free snowball fight.

    It is NOT a white thing. For f-s sake, it's not like there are uranium-coated shards of glass raining down from above. I'm black and grew up in the south. Snow was a rarity and a treat. As soon as we could, we broke out the toboggans. My [black] family from Michigan rolls their eyes at you locals' freaking out. My [black] family in Colorado skis & boards. My [black] cousin in Nashville tied bags to her kids' boots so they could play longer. It sucks that I have to go to work Monday, but I try to find the good and fun in what can be a miserable experience (if one chooses to let it be).

    I understand your frustration with the changing demographics of DC and the powers' response to the change. As a black newbie, I can see both sides. But you need to quit speaking as if the Ward 4 view is The Sacrosanct Black View of the Chocolate City of Yore.

    And if the dealers et al. are inside, then this would be an optimal time for you to get out and make a snow angel...and shovel the sidewalk like the good citizen you hold yourself out to be. Then when you go back in to enjoy Thelonious, Talisker and a Churchill in front of the fire, it will be that much more satisfying.

    I'm caffeined up now and am going to pull out my snowpants for a walk/shuffle.

  26. #26

    @ Why is it so difficult for some people to stay inside during this winter storm with a possible 30 inches of snow? Is this a white thing?

    Done, you will not see blacks in Ward 4 Washington, D.C. out on the streets tomorrow in this bad weather and lot's of snow falling
    Damn, I typically refrain from calling out my peeps in a public forum, especially those who are CONSCIOUS and I can relate to, but with that said you should have kept those comments to yourself!!
    Totally OFF DA WALL!!
    Everybody does not want to be COOPED UP in the house, especially men and youn boys or children period! I have a SUV, I will be playing in snow, I have sons, they will be playing in snow, CATCH MY DRIFT??

  27. #27

    Everyone is entitled to their opinions. I wonder how people would react during a terrorist attack in D.C. and would they stay inside their homes if asked to?

  28. #28

    FUCK YOU MPD WHITE OFFICIAL and your public service announcement!

  29. #29

    Done, please go straight to hell along with your family.

  30. #30

    @WARD4DC, relax - if people want to stay inside with a book, cool.If people want to go outside and play in the snow, cool. That's what snow is for. If they're not driving, they're not putting anyone at risk.

    Man, your inner child has to be long-dead to think there is something inherently wrong or deviant with PLAYING IN THE SNOW, for Christ's sake. I've encountered this attitude a lot in DC - this sort of aggressively-indoorsy, "why would anyone want to go outside where it's cold/hot/buggy when they can stay inside at home or in their cubicle all the time?" attitude. Don't understand it.

    And no, I don't think it's a white thing, but for kudos to you for bringing race into it yet again.

  31. #31

    Ben, you too can go to hell. Fuck you too!

  32. #32

    Damn, are you serious? A terrorist ATTACK is not an act of nature WARD4, you do understand the difference???
    Push back from computer, open a window, stick head out and look, listen and breath; DEEPLY.........THAT'S WASSUP!

  33. #33

    @ WARD4DC: well said

  34. #34

    There's nothing wrong with staying indoors for several days. I am snowed in with my sexy, hot, muscular, attractive white husband doing the nasty for the next several days. This is the problem with too many people, they don't spend enough quality time with their children or spouses.

  35. #35

    SEDCDUDE, people would not stay inside their homes if the world were coming to an end. I look for to the day the earth is destroyed along with mankind.

  36. #36

    Ben it's a result of "the politics" in this city, the less people know about you the perceived safer you are!!
    I know growing up everybody knew everybody and no 1 was trying to keep up with the JONESES, but that's changed, PRIDE has been masked by NARCISISM (did I spell that right) and POLITICAL CORRECTNESS! Now everybody wants to be somebody and everybody wants to be important, bunch of bullshit if you ask me!!
    WARD4 chill out and go outside and make a snowman, touch that snow and feel LIFE and ALIVE, smell that winter freshness that nature has blessed us with, FRESH AIR and a calm and tranquility rare in DC! Stop being afraid of your own shadow, throw a snowball or 2!

  37. #37

    Grace, I agree, there's nothing wrong with staying inside for a few days. And there's also nothing wrong with going out in the snow - and you can spend quality time with loved ones inside or out (although I guess you can't do the nasty all weekend outside).

    Of course, I'm sitting inside on my computer right now, so who am I kidding?

  38. #38

    Ben may WARD4NDC lost his inner child a long time ago. Many people sometimes 45 and up don't see playing in a snowstorm as being fun. Maybe he or she come from a different generation than you do. My parents use to party have fun and drink. As they got older they became so close to their God, because I guess death was knocking at their door.

    Bill Cosby once joke about his mother being mean as he grew up. His kids responded by saying, Dad, grandmother is a nice person and she's not mean as you stated. Cosby's response, yeah she's old now and ready to die, therefore she want to be close with her Lord. LOL

  39. #39

    LOL@Ben You should come join my husband and I for a 3 some. LOL I only like white males thou.

  40. #40

    you have issues and I doubt very seriously that any SANE DUDE would be snowed in with you!! YOU ARE A NUT JOB!!! The fact that a BLACK woman feels the need to specify a WHITE man in her life is fucked up to begin with! You too get out the house and play in the snow, hell build you a snow man, he'll most definitely be WHITE! Pitiful!

  41. #41

    Ayy Ben, you're on your own with GRACE'S coon ass!

  42. #42

    sedcdude, I can assure you, I am not afraid of the snow. I have been relaxing all day watching westerns on Encore television with the exception of avoiding my drunken cousin calling be from Baltimore to talk about all the snow. Now, my cousin need to get his drunk behind out of his hi rise apartment in Baltimore and go outside, instead of calling relatives up and down the east coast drunk talking a bunch of foolishness.

    sedcdude, I will be going out on tomorrow to shovel snow off my car and walk way. I am not looking forward to this task. It took me 3 hours in December to clear the snow off my car. I have 3 grown sons, but none live at home and they will not be able to get here in this snow to help me. There are some tasks my wife have being trying to get me to do around the house for several months. I will work on this tasks and later take me a nap. I work 12 to 14 hour days during the week at the office and I will use this time to rest and relax.

    Thanks sedcdude for your concern.

  43. #43

    Grace Jones, you are a funny person and a idiot. No one care about your husband being a white man. You are another Diana Ross. Give me a break!

    LOL@sedcdude for calling your ass a coon. lol lol lol

    Now that was funny.

  44. #44

    No thank you!!
    If you were near me, ward 7, I would not hesitate to help you, but with that said, you be careful and before you come in from cleaning off "an act of nature", throw 1 snowball, bet'chu feel better, I have 3 sons as well!

  45. #45

    I have an idea sedcdude, Ben and others. Maybe all of us on this blog can hook up across the street from my house at the Carter Baron in Rock Creek Park and have one big safe snow ball fight. Oops, the Park Police might come an arrest all of us. Grace Jones, I would love to throw a few snowballs at your ugly ass. lol lol

  46. #46

    sedcdude, sometimes I get bitter seeing my youth have passed me by and many of my classmates from High School and College have passed away. Getting old is a bitch!

  47. #47

    SEDCDUDE are you and others jealous, because I find white men to be more sexy and attractive than black men? That's a myth about white men being short changed. My man is packing and his muscular with a wash board stomach. Having a fine man like this is worth staying in doors playing. SEDCDUDE please get your pot belly ass inside, before your fat ass have a heart attack playing out in the snow. You can't help WARD4NDC if you wanted to, because you both would have a heart attack shoveling snow. Please join a gym and get those bodies in shape. Thank you and have a nice day!

  48. #48

    All you coons should stay indoors and the crime would go down in D.C. for a few days or hours.

  49. #49

    My father used to say the same thing, but I would buy him sneakers and make him come to my college bball games (best thing I ever did for him), even had a few young ladies pay him a "visit" a time or 2, but ward4 if there is 1 thing I've learned is IF YOU THINK OLD, YOU'LL BE OLD! To hell with labels, rules and expctations, I am very unpredictable and spontaneous, you can't lose that! Even when the physical deteriorates the mind lives on, the mental is the key, THINK OLD, YOU'LL BE OLD!!

  50. #50

    sedcdude, I remember as a child in the 60's, my brothers and I would play in the snow and we would slide down 13th Street, NW hill next to Cardozo Senior High. We would walk from Columbia Road, NW and Sherman Avenue, NW to my cousin's grandmother's house by walking thru Malcolm X Park to get to 18th & Willard Streets, NW. We had fun playing in the snow, but things have changed and the rules are so different. As a native Washingtonian, I am now the outsider.

  51. #51

    jesse helms
    fuck you, you QUISLING motherfucker! If you stay in, it'll be 1 less stray wet dog out and about you gump!

  52. #52

    Grace, did you take your meds on today? Maybe you and Jesse Helms should hook up along with your white husband for a 3 some. Better yet, please go join Jesse Helms in his grave down in North Carolina.

  53. #53

    No you're not, you have a great deal to offer, historically and perspectively, I told you, it's ALL IN THE MIND! You didn't make it this far being no fool and you are still relevant, you just gotta think outside YOUR box, I know it's different times, but you gotta go with the flow and IMPOSE your righteousness on what makes you uncomfortable, hell, everybody else do it, ethiopians, whites, gentrifiers, skateboarders, mexicans, gays and the snow ballers...
    DO YOU WARD4!!

  54. #54

    Grace Jones are you still performing? I will be doing a Euorpean concert coming up in March. Maybe you should join me by performing? I didn't see you at the Grammys Grace.

  55. #55

    I'm out, the snow awaits!!!!! Jesse Helms take your thumb ou'chur ass you SYNCOPHANT!

  56. Daddy Grace Fish Sandwich

    Have some of you been smoking today inside during the snow storm? Please put those crack pipes down and go outside and have fun or take you a long nap and never wake up.

    We are having a fish fry on today at 5th & M Streets, NW. There will be fried chicken too.

  57. #57

    sedcdude be careful out there with your kids. I will try and get out there on tomorrow and shovel snow from my walk way and on my car. I think I will take Daddy Grace advice by taking me a nap. I am sleepy. lol

  58. #58

    @ Grace Jones
    You nappy headed ho', blow up dolls and mannequins don't count! And for the record, I'm far from out of shape you ignorant ass, bootlickin' aunt jemmima of the fucked up kind, gag on snow ho'!!!

  59. #59

    LOL LOL LOL@sedcdude. I love the Washington City Paper blogs. You can really be yourself and say what's on your mind. It's good comic releif. lol lol

  60. #60

    sedcdude don't be mad, because you have a small wee wee and my white husband is packing over 9 inches. My blond green eyed baby is a muscular looking Alex O'loughlin of the former canceled CBS series "Three Rivers".

    sedcdude, I know you look like Rochester Anderson or Wesly Snipes with a big beer belly. If you were a light skinned muscular in shape Negro sedcdude, maybe I would give you a chance. Be gone Baboon.

  61. #61

    Reading these retarded comments on here is enough to make one go outside and play in the snow. Can we say or use the work "retard" anymore. I must be politically correct. lol


  62. #62

    SEDCDUDE are you jealous, because I am still a DIVA and hot white men love me? Baby, you need to watch my video "Pull Up To The Bumper". LOL

    I now reside in the Kalarama neighborhood of Ward 1 D.C. with my white blonde, muscular, green eyed husband.

  63. #63

    sedcdude, please read the comments in the Washington Post on rising rents in the District of Columbia. Let me know what you think about this article.

  64. #64

    Anyone know what happened with the planned 14 & U snowball fight? Did it happen? Sounded earlier like things might get ugly.

  65. #65

    that article is pretty much indicative of the times and our mayor! He has enabled and facilitated this process, but it's up to us to encourage, prepare and invest in our children so that they will take control of their destiny and can live comfortably.
    No one will do it for you and it's all about compound interest and profit, bottom line! This is America and high rents are becoming the norm, get on or get left!

    As for GRACE, you are symbolic of the "slave mentality" that has and will keep some blacks disrespected, WEAK and cheap you dumb bitch!!!

    BTW, snow is a wonderful thing!

  66. #66

    Did anyone else see another cop at the Dupont Cir fight riding around in a camo-painted hummer getting out every 20 yards and daring people to throw snowballs. He was grandstanding in full uniform yelling, "don't nobody be stupid."

  67. #67

    I decided to get out and I left my Adams Morgan home and I walked down to DuPont Circle to see the snow ball fight. Man, it turned out to be lots of fun with some hot guys. We had one gay old time out there this afternoon. I met someone and we went back to his place for some safe fun inside. The gay site Adam4Adam is pact today with over 1200 gay/bi men in D.C. on line looking for hook ups. There are a lot of lonely people out there and during this blizzard haven't helped. Enjoy life people!

  68. #68

    sedcdude, I am just waking up from my nap and I had dinner with my wife. Now am back on here to see what's being written by others.

    sedcdude, please read this article written by Colbert King in the Washington Post today discussing King Fenty.

    Grace Jones, I looked at your video and I didn't know if you were a man or woman. You are just dam ugly. LOL

  69. #69

    P.S. sedcdude, man I don't have the energy to deal with all that snow on tomorrow shoveling out my car and the walkway. People have to be careful shoveling snow, because they could have a heart attack. One son did come back in his SUV to check on us. He will be back on tomorrow with his 2 brothers to help me shovel the snow. Praise be to God. This is the time when I am thankful I have children who happen to be law abiding citizens and college graduates. I had to say this sedcdude, because some whites think all black men are savages and uneducated. Grace is an ignorant old fart.

  70. #70

    Bisexual Vampire, I hope you used a condom?

  71. #71

    sedcdude, D.C. is changing for the worse. I look forward to my death. Liberalism is destroying this city and country.

  72. #72

    Bisexual Vampire you are nasty and someone should stake you, the undead. WARD4DC you are right, whites are taking over D.C. with their push for gay marriage and liberal policies. The blacks destroyed our Nations Captital with crime, welfare, and drugs. Now the white gays and white liberals will destroy it too with their agenda. Soon mankind will destroy itself. Good riddance! Then they can come join me in hell. I look forward in meeting sedcdude in hell. I will be him down for an eternity.

  73. #73

    Then they can come join me in hell. I look forward in meeting sedcdude in hell. I will beat him down for an eternity.

  74. #74

    Quote In Washington Post:

    1:41 p.m. -- An only-in-DC snowball fight
    Only in Washington do you schedule a snowball fight -- and distribute a big legal disclaimer along with it. By 1 p.m. today, more than 5,000 people had signed up for the Official Dupont Circle Snowball Fight group on Facebook. An outdoor bar had been set up outside the Dupont Hotel, and Mayor Adrian Fenty even stopped by to say hello and shake hands. Police were expected to be on hand to keep things calm. The fight is even supposed to be live streamed here: A live stream of photos is also planned on Flickr.

    The organizers, thirtysomethings Ami Greener and MIchael Lipin, first tried to put together a snowball fight on Facebook during the December snowstorm, but only about a half-dozen friends showed up. This time they tried much harder, getting advice from friends about how to use Twitter and to get the word out.

    "I tweeted it with hashtags like Snowmaggedon, Snowpocalypse, that kind of thing," Greener said. "This was my first tweet. I might start using it now!" Added Lipin: "It went viral. I've never seen anything like this. We had 33 members on Thursday morning, and it's growing by hundreds an hour right now." Like the best Washington lawyers, Lipin posted a mild caution on Facebook: "You are coming to Dupont Circle Park on Saturday, Feb 6, 2010, to play snowballs voluntarily. The people spreading the word about the happening are not preparing any special equipment or conditions and may not be held responsible for your decisions and/or actions." Greener and Lipin will part ways during combat, with Lipin expecting to fight with Dupont South and Greener with Dupont North. In the meantime, they're hanging out in front of Starbucks, hoping turnout will match the interest online. -- Amy Gardner

  75. #75


  76. #76

    Jesse shut the hell up you delusional wind bag!
    You and the likes of you are the reason d.c. is screwed, with your fake ass conservative rhetoric, which breeds cronyism, favoritism, racism, greed and IGNORANCE! It was your kind who made $$ off the the poor and the uneducated while you did your dirt on the low and behind closed doors, that's the MAJOR difference between you and liberal fuckdolls who have flooded the city with their IN YOUR FACE approach to life, that's the problem, NO MIDDLE GROUND or real logic being used!!

    Fuck you Jesse!!

  77. #77

    We got the walk shoveled all the way from the house to the corner and around to the alley. Also did a few people's steps. Then we walked to the grocery store, threw snowballs, and made snow-slides in the 8-10 foot tall piles of snow. My kid loved all that.
    Oh yeah, and with a nod to all the omniphobes, at the end of the day we watched a movie. It was a great day. Tomorrow's looking good too!

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