Sorry for Partying has left a new comment on your post "Another hectic weekend for APD":
Geeze I'm starting to wonder what you would even write about if these "kids" weren't having a good time - every other article is about "the party house of the week". If Amherst is so interesting and great without college students then find better material. You practically re-write the police log...
I wonder if you've ever experienced a "good time" as a young adult. Sing or dance with friends? Get rowdy? Consume an alcoholic beverage, perhaps? If you had one fun bone in your body I bet you'd understand why college students behave this way. That Peter Clark kid has a good point - what's a party without music?
Contrary to popular belief, most UMass students actually do school work throughout the week. Getting into this school isn't as easy as it once was, the class of 2014's average high school GPA was a 3.61. (compare that to Boston University's class of 2014 that had an average GPA of 3.6) So when the weekend rolls around I think most of the students deserve to party, drink and make some noise without being charged $300 for a noise violation.
I have had nothing but good times with great friends at this school. It's unfortunate that more and more people have been getting arrested. What's funny is that I've partied at most of the houses featured on your "blog" and they've been GREAT. I can remember each one like it was yesterday - Tracy Circle, PIKE, Meadow Street, Townhouses, South Prospect and Summer Street! The guys at these houses are incredible too, if you actually went out of your way to meet and interact with some of the student body I'm sure you would agree.
"Did you know the airport was there when you moved in?" UMass Amherst has been around way longer than you have, and so has the partying. Why should it stop living up to the name ZooMass? I talk to alumni and they reminisce on the glory days - did you ever have those? Did you ever go to a party with 100+ of your closest friends? Do you even have 100 friends?
This school is the best thing that has ever happened to me. And honestly I feel bad, because if I remember correctly you have a daughter - who will NEVER get to experience the UMass I did, If she even chooses to go here. Which, by the looks of it, you probably wouldn't let that happen. Heaven forbid she drink and dance at a party in college with tons of people. Although if she does decide to go here, I hope she doesn't get arrested for playing music too loud and drinking with her friends - wouldn't that just come back and bite you in the butt.
If you could wrap your head around the fact that these parties and gatherings are what complete the college experience, I think you'd have a better understanding as to why these things happen. We don't do it to spite the community or the police force - we do it because we enjoy partying. Hobart Hoedown has been a UMass tradition - and although you weren't the person who decided to have the police and riot force posted up on the street that day, you're part of a community that supports that. We have four years where it's socially acceptable to party our butts off and have the time of our lives and then we have to grow up and participate in real-life. If you could go back in time and relive a day of college - what would you wanna be doing? Sitting in a living room playing a board game on a Saturday night with 5 of your closest friends or be dancing to loud music in a house drinking wiith 100 - 200 of your friends?
...please enlighten me
Thanks for writing--as opposed to using text speak. I'm actually coming up on only the one year anniversary of my popular "Party House of the Weekend" series," which commenced on October 18th; and since then I have put up 58 posts under the tag "nuisance house" out of 1,696 total posts (not counting this one) or .034%--hardly "every other article."
And my family first moved to Amherst in the early 1850s--before UMass was founded.
Interesting, isn't it? When you shine a spotlight or hold up a mirror to their actions people often respond with criticism of the messenger who is simply holding the mirror/light, and try to portray them as somehow overly fixated.
I also notice that my Party Boy, newsworthy friends Peter Clark and Emerson Rutkowski have changed their names on Facebook, as though that is going to throw off the Google stain effect.
But you bring up a good point. Where do you draw the line between kids just having a good time and behavior that simply should not be tolerated by civilized adults, assuming you believe--as I do--that 18 to 22-year-old students are adults and civilized?
I found the perfect example on Peter Clark's Facebook DJ business page (a link he has now deleted) and sent it to the Amherst Select Board and acting Town Manager. It's called 121 Meadow Street and it consists of a little over nine minutes of raw video documenting the "party" at 121 Meadow Street. A party that soon thereafter became a "riot" with rocks and bottles hurled at responding Amherst police officers.
The state of Massachusetts recently passed a "crowd control" law which requires one sober employee for every 250 people at an event. This was in response to the tragic Rhode Island station nightclub fire that killed 100 people who were--just prior to that--having a "good time."
If I had to guess that 121 Meadow Street party, at it's peak, would have required 5 or 6 sober crowd control personnel. At about the five minute mark you can hear one of the tenants of the house saying plaintively, "I gotta get this car out of my driveway..."
What if it was a life or death emergency where every second counts?
That same night the Amherst Fire Department was swamped with calls--many of them UMass students having had too much to drink. Our Town Manager slipped and fell last month and was seriously injured. The quick response of AFD probably saved his life. But what if all the ambulances were too busy with drunk kids to have gotten to him in a timely manner?
A while back a sitting Select Board member's husband needed an ambulance, but they were all tied up with UMass type calls. A Northampton ambulance had to bring him to the hospital.
Although 121 Meadow Street is Ground Zero for student housing, there have been numerous parties just like that in residential neighborhoods (sounds like you attended a few) that are not dominated by student abodes--where average people go to work or school, deal with life in a responsible mature manner, and need to get some sleep.
They also take pride in maintaining their property and hate it when a neighboring house looks like a trash dumpster that was hit by a wind storm. Or when Party House patrons deposit cups, bottles, cans, vomit--or worse--on their property.
Oldest saying in the book my young friend: "All things in moderation."