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Franklin Street invaded by ghoulish grown-ups

Posted October 31, 2007
Updated September 27, 2008

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— Chapel Hill was under siege Wednesday night. Upward of 75,000 people were expected to have crowded Franklin Street during its annual Halloween bash.

Hair-raising rabble-rousers were warned; a large police presence was keeping watch.

“This is not something that we typically would enjoy. I think any large crowd event poses some concerns, and some stresses on police personnel as well,” Lt. Kevin Gunter, of the Chapel Hill Police Department, said.

Like last year's party, Chapel Hill police had help from nearly 400 officers, from other jurisdictions, to keep ghosts and goblins in check.

“Obviously, we want to keep out weapons, flammable items," Lt. Gunter said. "We will not tolerate bonfires during Halloween."

When the bewitching hour came, Franklin Street changed from a bustling commercial strip steeped in academia to a ghoulish freak show.

“It's a massive amount of people, so something will go wrong, but I don't expect to have that much trouble this year,” restaurant owner Hany Moaty said.

“It's so exciting. It's my first year, so it's something new. Everyone talking about it is so excited," UNC freshman Nicoya Langley said.

“Everybody is doing something crazy. Everybody has got crazy costumes with crazy stuff going on. So, I'm really excited to see the costumes," UNC freshman Lauren Fortkort said.

The festival ran from 9 p.m. until 1:30 a.m. Alcohol was not be permitted, and all state and local laws pertaining to alcohol were enforced.

Town ordinances and state statutes prohibited the following items in the closed area:

  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Glass bottles
  • Fireworks and explosives
  • Animals
  • Weapons
  • Paint
  • Flammable substances
  • Coolers

Last year, an estimated 70,000 people showed up for the Halloween celebration. Twenty-seven people were arrested or cited during the event.


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  • jkuwalik2 Nov 1, 2007

    the people here let you think as you wish and have progressive thoughts

    I thought that was a right guaranteed in the constitution, not a right given only in Chapel Hill

  • ncmickey Nov 1, 2007

    Less arrests than at a NASCAR race.

    Better looking costumes too.

  • jahausa Nov 1, 2007

    82000 people. 13 arrests. The street is already clean and open. Stop hating Chapel Hill because the people here let you think as you wish and have progressive thoughts. We do things right here.

  • lornadoone Nov 1, 2007

    Went out to Raleigh for the Haunted Hillsborough St Hike... it was a BLAST!!

  • brooksdewire Oct 31, 2007

    Have fun, stay safe, do no harm (stay out of the trees and planters). Enjoy.

  • jkuwalik2 Oct 31, 2007

    again, you resort to childishness and assumptions, but what did I expect from chapel Hill?

  • jkuwalik2 Oct 31, 2007

    sorry about the misspelling, just a typo

  • jkuwalik2 Oct 31, 2007

    ethnicity, white, european desent here. No problem, proud of my heritage, and you.

  • jkuwalik2 Oct 31, 2007

    illeal comment is due to the fact that all you see at walmart these days are illegal. Sorry I thoughts you were trying to incinuate something by your comment. As far as nads go, you don't have enough to write it. Bet you can not find any in your house

  • TarheelTurtle Oct 31, 2007

    Yeah, I hide like a turtle at confrontation. "B" word rhymes with wall, not witch. Walmart comment was completely justified considering your reference to the mall... TURTLE has to do with the Turtle Hospital on Topsail Island. Where you get the illegal inference, I can only guess that you have some kind of complex about your ethnicity. And yes, thank God you don't live in Chapel Hill...now THAT'S childish. Buono notte.