Courage Cup Organizers Cross Polo Mallets
Forget the country club rep: Polo is a very rough game. And now for the organizers of the three-year-old Courage Cup charity match, the sod-flinging has moved off the Virginia fields and onto the blogs.
In 2005, founder Greg Ball -- a former Air Force officer who ran the first two events in '04 and '05 -- left D.C. to enter politics in his native New York state, handing off the '06 event to friend Keri Ann Meslar and another socially connected Washingtonian, Andrea Rodgers. After winning a state assembly seat last fall, the 29-year-old Ball wanted back in for this June's match.
But the new leadership balked. Rodgers claims Ball "ran a frat-party type" event that raised only $1,000 each year and left behind sloppy records and unpaid bills. The new board, she says, incorporated the group and raised $8,000 last June for Work to Ride (which gets inner-city kids into horsy pursuits). Ball's attorney, Phil Marin, claims the new board stole Ball's idea and logo, then tried to push him out.
Both sides say they were heading toward resolving the dispute after a Jan. 19 meeting with lawyers. Days later, though, Ball e-mailed several thousand local polo fans, claiming that he was hosting the next Courage Cup and denouncing Rodgers and Meslar's attempt to "hijack" the event. Rodgers retaliated with a press release outlining Ball's alleged failures. Now each side is blaming the other for inflammatory postings on an Albany politics blog.
Yesterday neither side sounded optimistic about reaching agreement.
Mike Scott Has JT's Back
|Local musician Mike Scott.(Afshin Shahidi - Afshin Shahidi)|
Scott, 45, got his big break working for Prince ("a musical genius") and now tours with the white-hot Timberlake, who requires the entire band to dance with him. "Justin's, like, half my age. He never slows down. It's a lot of work to keep up, but it's fun that those guys respect me."
And all those screaming groupies? No big deal. "I've been doing that so long, it doesn't faze me," says Scott, who's engaged to his longtime girlfriend. Sure, he flirts with the crowd, but "at the end of the night, it's not rewarding. It was fun in my 20s, but it's part of the show now." Darn -- we thought he really liked us.
HEY, ISN'T THAT . . . ?