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Viking Hall extending hours to issue refunds after Duck Dynasty cancellation

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BRISTOL, TN (WJHL) -

Viking Hall in Bristol announced it will extend its operation hours to issue refunds after the cancellation of "Duck Dynasty" star Willie Robertson's appearance at an April fundraiser.

The Viking Hall Box Office will be open on Saturday, November 16 from 10:00 AM to 12 PM to issue refunds, according to a news release issued Tuesday.  Normally, the ticket office is open Monday through Friday.

 "Tickets that were purchased directly from the Viking Hall Box Office may be brought back to the Box Office windows on Saturday to immediately be given a credit on their credit card or refunded cash if the tickets were purchased in cash," said Darlene Cole, Venues Manager for the city of Bristol, TN.  "Lots of people purchased their tickets on the first day of ticket sales which was on a Saturday and our normal business hours would make it difficult for them to get their tickets refunded."

Tickets purchased online must go through etix.com to get a refund, Cole said. 

Family Ministries, the Greeneville-based non-profit at-risk youth charity which scheduled the Willie Robertson event, canceled the fundraiser after the stars of Duck Dynasty brokered a deal to sell wine.  A Family Ministries administrator said that would send a mixed message to the young people being treated through the charity's alcohol and drug treatment program.

Below is an earlier story related to this topic.

It turns out Duck Commander CEO Willie Robertson will not appear at a local fundraiser for a Greeneville Christian non-profit at-risk youth program, and the reason appears to be the new "Duck Dynasty" wine.

"Family Ministries" announced Monday the April 12th event at Bristol's Viking Hall has been canceled. It originally was scheduled for October 19th but was postponed until April due to a scheduling conflict.

"We feel that in light of the recent news that the stars of the show "Duck Dynasty" are partnering with Trinchero Family Estates to launch Duck Commander Wines, to continue with this event would send mixed messages to the young people who go through our Adolescent Drug and Alcohol program," said Derek Bell, Director of Development for Family Ministries. "Our greatest responsibility is to the young people we serve."

Family Ministries said approximately half of the children they serve go through its Adolescent Drug and Alcohol Program.

The fundraiser featuring Robertson, one of the stars of the hugely popular reality show on A&E, was planned to support 10,000-square-foot expansion of classroom space and counseling facilities. Family Ministries started the project last month and hopes to finish it next summer.

"Our message must be consistent," said Bell. "The lives of those children may well hang in the balance. We certainly apologize to the people who have already purchased tickets, and pray they understand our position."

Tickets sold will be refunded by Viking Hall Civic Center and at e-tix.com, according to a news release.


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Willie Robertson's Bristol appearance postponed until spring

News Channel 11 has learned this weekend's speaking engagement for Duck Dynasty star and Duck Commander CEO Willie Robertson has been postponed. 

The City of Bristol said in a press release Wednesday morning, the event's date has been change from October 19 to Saturday, April 12, 2014, "Due to circumstances beyond our control the event must be moved to a spring date," said Derek Bell, Director o Family Ministries.

Robertson will speak at the Viking Hall Civic Center at the Family Ministries' School Expansion Project fundraiser.

An agency, representing the Robertson Family, says the family has apologized for any inconvenience this personal scheduling conflict may cause ticket holders.

"We at Family Ministries are very sorry for the inconvenience this date change will cause ticket holders, but unfortunately we have no control over the situation," continued Derek Bell.

Those who have already purchased tickets will be able to use those tickets at the new event date in the spring.  Tickets are still available at the Viking Hall Civic Center or online at www.ETIX.com or by phone aat 423764-0188.  

Family Ministries says proceeds from this event will benefit the planned 10,000- square-foot expansion that will update classroom space and counseling facilities for the children the organization serves.

The school expansion is expected to begin this fall and is expected to be completed summer 2014.

Copyright 2013 WJHL. All rights reserved.


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