Holiday Lights at Reston Town Center

This set of photos is briefer than I expected. It seems that using a tripod at Town Center is Against The Rules.

I got off one sequence of photos of some trees and was setting up for the Christmas Tree when a security guard approached me and told me I couldn’t take pictures.

I was surprised since I’ve taken photos at Town Center lots of times without being hassled. He clarified. It wasn’t taking pictures that was forbidden. It was using a tripod that was forbidden.

Politely, I asked why. He didn’t have a reason. It was the Rules. If I wanted to use a tripod I had to obtain written permission from the management office. Of course they were closed and only open during business hours.

The guard was polite. He was just doing his job, however stupid the rules he was told to enforce are so harassing him would do no good, but I couldn’t help how people were supposed to get good photos of lights at night without a tripod. Of course, not being a photographer, he had no clue.

The only reason I can figure is that they are concerned about tripods being a problem when the area is crowded. But, the area wasn’t crowded. It was surprisingly not crowded for a week before Christmas. The on\y person likely to be impeded by my tripod was me.

So far as I can tell this is just another rule made by people to make themselves feel powerful. Being a blanket rule it serves no purpose other than to annoy photographers who wanted to show how pretty the lights were. Now instead of posting that people should go see the lights, I’m posting that RTC has an annoying, arbitrary policy that does nothing but aggravate people. Had it been crowded, I’d have understood. I wouldn’t even have tried because the crowds would be as annoying to me as I would be to them.

So, unless you plan to shoot handheld (don’t know whether using a monopod would get you shut down or not), stay away from RTC. Or try to stop in at the management nazis’ office to get a permit. I may still try just to find out the process, but I’m betting they won’t give them out.

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