NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — Brooklyn was on the world stage Sunday night – perhaps like never before – with Barclays Center hosting the MTV Video Music Awards.
As CBS 2’s Dave Carlin reported, the red carpet was out for the biggest stars in music as crowds gathered outside the stadium. Barclays Center itself was fixed up with plenty of extra razzle-dazzle.
This is the 30th year for the awards show, which delivers outrageous fashions and bizarre antics, and usually makes headlines.
Before the ceremony began, some residents were worried that an event so big, with so much extra security for so many VMA VIPs, the result will be chaos and delays that Brooklyn can do without.
“You can’t even cross the street — you know, to go onto Flatbush Avenue — which I think is wrong. It’s not even until tonight,” resident Victor Thomas said before the event. “They’re treating the neighbors like we’re second-class citizens or something, and I don’t think it’s right.”
Some spectators outside the stadium were not happy either. As 1010 WINS’ Gary Baumgarten reported, crowds gathered at the police barricades for several hours, only to be directed to move back by officers on the scene.
“We’ve been over here standing about an hour or two back here, and then they tell us to move,” a woman said. She said police told the crowd they would be let in after the awards ceremony started, but nobody let them in.
But others said they understand the need for public safety, and they are just happy to be in the crowd and part of the excitement. They also said they were proud such a huge event was being held in Brooklyn.
“We should be happy that they are finally making Brooklyn known,” said Sade Richards. “because out of all the places in the world, it really isn’t known like that.”
And for the thousands of people who did make it to the sidelines on the red carpet along Dean Street, the experience was a game-changer as they watched Lady Gaga, Katy Perry and other superstars.
“I’m going to go to bed and be like, ‘What just happened tonight?’” one spectator said.
“This is the best thing that ever happened,” another said.
“Brooklyn — we are on the map,” said Al Tejada of Bushwick.
“Look at all these people out here,” added Brittany DeRasmo of Park Slope. “I’ve never seen this many people here.”
Brooklyn is known for music, Carlin pointed out. Superstars from Jay-Z and Norah Jones to Neil Diamond and Neil Sedaka all hail from the borough, and so many more. Many people said that made Brooklyn a perfect fit for the awards ceremony, and look forward to seeing the big event return.
“It’s people coming here; knowing what a great borough we are; bringing money bringing attention,” said Liz Cooper of Park Slope.