Ballard’s Loses Liquor and Entertainment Licenses for Two Weeks

Ballard’s Loses Liquor and Entertainment Licenses for Two Weeks


Tuesday, August 23, 2022


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Ballard’s has lost its liquor and entertainment licenses for two weeks. PHOTO: Ballard’s FB

Ballard’s Beach Resort on Block Island has lost its liquor and entertainment licenses for two weeks, following a meeting of the New Shoreham licensing board on Monday night. 

The meeting was held after one person was arrested for fighting at Ballard’s on August 8 during a reggae festival — and multiple people were arrested on the ferry back to mainland, after there was a “mass exodus” from the establishment when the music — and alcohol — were shut off early. 

Board’s Findings 


The licensing board found the following, as it pertained to the testimony from Ballard’s — and Rhode Island State Police Capt. Peter Chabot, the interim chief of the New Shoreham Police Department — as to what transpired on August 8 


At approximately 6 PM, Trooper Chabot learned Ballard’s shut off its music and stop serving alcohol early — the event had been publicly advertised to end at 7 PM. 

The patrons started to leave the facility all at once — there was a mass exodus. [Chabot] spoke with Ballard’s owner Steven Filippi who indicated he turned the music off and stopped serving alcohol. Trooper Chabot instructed Filippi to turn the music back on and put a bartender at the bars in an attempt to stop the mass exodus of people from Ballards’. 

This didn’t stop the mass exodus — the ferry line extended out on Water Street and the line was estimated to be comprised of approximately 3,000 people.

The crowd was people coming from Ballard’s, and people were cutting the ferry line. The ferry scheduled for 6:45 left early at 6 PM because it had already reached capacity. The tone of the crowd at 6 PM was hot, tired, and frustrated. There were several verbal altercations and several physical altercations in the ferry line. 

The police — the Rhode Island State Police and the New Shoreham Police — had limited resources. RISP had 6 troopers on duty on Block Island that day. New Shoreham had six officers on duty that day. There was one arrest at Ballard’s that tied up two officers who had to transport and process the suspect. 

Ballard’s cross-examined trooper Chabot who testified…he knew weeks before August 8 that the island would be ‘quite busy’ as it was a state holiday and due to reggae fest being held. Mr. Filippi complied with Trooper Chabot’s request for additional security at Ballard’s for reggae fest.

Trooper Chabot didn’t discuss additional security measures with Interstate [the Block Island ferry service provider]. Interstate’s employees were overwhelmed by the crowds, just like the police, Ballards employees, and everyone on the island that day. 




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