Homecoming took over the University District this past weekend.
Queen’s students celebrated Homecoming 2023 with a reduced number of unsanctioned events on Aberdeen St. relative to previous years. Despite fewer unsanctioned events, Kingston Police issued $57,000 in fines, an increase from last year when $44,400 in monetary penalties were handed out.
“Thank you to our campus and community partners for their collaboration to keep Queen’s and Kingston communities safe this weekend,” Queen’s University said in a statement on X, formally known as Twitter.
“There were significantly fewer unsanctioned street gatherings thanks to the collective efforts of our partners. We want to thank everyone who celebrated safely and respectfully.”
Students told The Journal the increased police presence changed the game for unsanctioned parties in the University District. Camryn Massie, ArtSci ’23, reported the police presence putting students on edge because they’re constantly monitored.
“I feel as though now there’s been increasingly a big police presence. That definitely interferes with the usual experience, but it’s still fun. It’s just different for sure,” Massie said in an interview with The Journal.
Over the weekend, there were 135 bylaw enforcement charges, which accumulated to a total of $57,600. Bylaw Enforcement reported issuing two fines for hosting a nuisance party.
Police issued 147 Part I Summons, of which 134 were for open liquor. There were two criminal code arrests for obstructing a peace officer.
“Although we saw more cooperation with enforcement, officers still dealt with a substantial number of residential parties, along with a complete street takeover that posed safety risks to the community,” Kyle Compeau, manager of enforcement services at the City of Kingston, said in a press release.
Kingston Police declared a nuisance party on Aberdeen St. on Saturday afternoon around 1 p.m., warning attendees to disperse or face penalties under Kingston’s Nuisance Party Bylaw. Within three hours the police lifted the nuisance party declaration.
With the University District under control, Kingston Police turned their attention to the Gord Edgar Downie Pier, which was closed over the weekend. They expressed disappointment at students trespassing on City property.
“There was blatant disregard for signs prohibiting use of the park. Alcohol plus open water is an incredibly dangerous combination and we put these measures in place to keep people safe,” Curtis Smith, the City’s director of licensing and enforcement, said in a press release.
The pier will also be closed over the upcoming Halloween weekend.
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