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Citing Budget Shortfall, Richmond Grand Illumination Downsized to Single Lite-Brite

RICHMOND, Va. — Richmond’s Grand Illumination will be the latest victim of the city’s reported budget deficit. The shortfall has been attributed to a number of factors, including a series of questionable business dealings involving fondue bars, usage of taxpayer dollars for the mayoral office’s annual booze cruise, and a number of earmarks dedicated solely to Mayor Stoney’s new headshots for Richmond Magazine.

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As a result of the budget shortfall, the city has had to make drastic cuts. Richmond City Public Schools will no longer be featuring after-school programs or lunch. The city is also currently looking at several buy-outs and sponsorships to change the city’s name to Portland 2 or Altria, Virginia.

However, most importantly, the city will no longer be able to fund the Grand Illumination.

Mayor Stoney announced today, “Rather than cancel the entire event, an elegant, environmentally friendly, and pared down version of the event will be taking place in downtown Richmond at the top of Dominion’s downtown office.”

“Rather than put the city even further in the hole, Richmond’s Grand Illumination will be sponsored by Hasbro and will feature a single Lite-Brite which has been donated to the city as a great act of holiday spirit,” Stoney explained.

The Lite-Brite will be illuminated by a series of lights featuring dazzling colors such as green. Unfortunately, red lights would have cost an additional $0.75 which had to be used for the tolls. The small Lite-Brite will be visible to the tens of people who will be standing in the general vicinity of the device when Mayor Stoney flips the ceremonial switch after installing the ceremonial AA batteries from his own Xbox One controller.

Mayor Stoney was optimistic about this cost-saving measure. “The Grand Illumination, which we will now call the Illumination, will bring the city together and prove that we don’t need fancy things like trees, ornaments, or light to celebrate Christmas. We just need each other and a $300 million loan at a reasonable interest rate to cover the deficit.”

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