Local News

UNC student president wants to change Franklin Street parties

Posted July 31, 2009 10:46 p.m. EDT
Updated August 1, 2009 6:38 a.m. EDT

— University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Student Body President Jasmin Jones wants to make some changes to the way Tar Heels party after a big win on Franklin Street.

“It can become destructive in a way – whether they are starting fire or getting really excited and pulling down a tree,” Jones said.

Chapel Hill Police said street celebrations around this year's NCAA basketball championship cost the town around $200,000. About 400 officers kept crowds under control on Franklin Street. After the celebrations, damage and garbage were left behind.

Jones suggests getting a screen so the best game moments can be replayed. She would also like to have a sidewalk deejay.

“We want everybody to be safe, everybody to be comfortable,” Jones said.

Jones also would like several beach balls to take the place of partiers who normally bounce on top of the large crowd.

Former student Collin Lee said the Franklin Street tradition will be tough to break.

"I feel like a deejay and beach balls would be good in addition to the bonfires, but it won’t replace it,” Lee said.

Steve Payne, who owns the Blue Horn Lounge on 125 E Franklin St., has been through Franklin Street parities before. He said people mess up his windows, throw trash around and act “obnoxious.”

“Then you got people that get sick,” Payne said.

However, Payne said does like the good business he gets during the parties.

Jones said she is openly looking for other suggestion to curb the partying on Franklin Street. She wants to run them by students to see what they think.