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Saturday, May 25, 2024
A glass ban on State Street is in place again for Freakfest weekend

City approves annual glass ban on State Street during Halloween weekend

Students are now prohibited from carrying glass bottles on and around State Street during this year’s Halloween weekend festivities downtown, due to a glass ban enforced each year during Freakfest.

The Downtown Coordinating Committee unanimously voted to establish a glass-free zone on State Street and nearby cross streets starting at 9:30 p.m. on both Oct. 26 and 27, ending at 5:00 a.m. the next morning.

Ald. Mike Verveer, District 4, said the city designed this ordinance to improve public safety after several violent Halloween riots occurred on State Street about a decade ago where crowds used glass bottles as projectiles.

“Once the ordinance was adopted and used for the first year, the amount of glass on the street diminished substantially,” Verveer said.

Committee members said they plan to discuss this year’s Freakfest event with police officials and event coordinators at their October meeting.

Ald. Scott Resnick, District 8, said the police have yet to release their official expectations on crowd size, but he said he expects larger crowds this year due to headline bands like Big Gigantic and Mac Miller.

“I’ve heard more buzz just in general about the event, so that makes me more optimistic about the crowds,” Resnick said.

Verveer said he does not predict a greater number of people at Freakfest would pose challenges for law enforcement.

“I think logically [police presence] could increase somewhat consistently with the crowd size,” Verveer said. “I just wouldn’t expect [the larger crowds] to be much of a problem.”

But Resnick told the Daily Cardinal on Sept. 17 he expects fewer law enforcement officials will be on duty because of a decreasing trend in major incidents at past Freakfest events.

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