Townhouse Apartments quad 5:15ish
Saturday was supposed to be the "Half Way to Blarney Blowout" celebration, but with the massive (bad) publicity generated by the release of the Davis Report Thursday night the downtown bars didn't dare enact it this year, and the main offenders agreed not to even open until 5:00 PM vs their regular 11:00 AM opening time allowed by license.
But that did not stop many hundreds of "college aged youth" from gathering in the usual spot this afternoon, the grassy quad inside Townhouse Apartments in North Amherst. Last year that was the scene of the Blarney Blowout riot, but with only 6 arrests vs this year's 58.
When I first saw the huge number of party goers and the exceedingly small number of police officers (half dozen) I thought about calling up Mr. Davis to have him come do a live demonstration for the Amherst Police Department on crowd management.
Hey, for $160,000 you would think a follow up demo would be in order.
Without donning riot gear, or using "chemical agents," or even raising their voices, the police sorted out the crowd in 20 minutes or so starting with the apartments playing loud music. Once the music died the crowd got the message and slowly dispersed, leaving behind a mess.
The BIG difference between this and the Blarney Blowout of March 8, 2014? When the officers politely asked for something, they got it. In other words, cooperation.
Interestingly, the kids had no problem invoking their First Amendment rights, as dozens whipped out their smart phones to record the officers, and a fewer number hurled an expletive deleted or two from the protection of their second floor apartment.
Yet some of those very same individuals questioned why I was recording the scene. Which makes you wonder, what is it they would not want parents or guardians to see?
Townhouse Apartments quad March, 2013