UMass: Blarney Blowout safety, security successful

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AMHERST, Mass. (WWLP) – UMass and Amherst police were able to keep the annual Blarney Blowout under control Saturday.

So far, there were only 7 arrests and 10 summons at this year’s celebration.

This year’s Blarney Blowout was a completely different scene than two years ago, when more than 70 people were arrested. Amherst Police arrested 7 people and 10 summons were issued. UMass police had no arrests, despite a large concert being held at the Mullins Center.

UMass Police Chief Tyrone Parham, credits the students for keeping the peace. “We as administrators and officials want this, but I think from what we were hearing, I think the students also wanted this to be changed as well.”

Police from 15 neighboring communities assisted Amherst in maintaining order.

UMass student Greg Mcclung said, “The amount of police force is really outstanding. There’s people from Ludlow, Belchertown, and all surrounding areas.”

Amherst Police Chief Scott Livingstone told 22News, all arrests involved under-aged drinking. He also said those arrested were compliant with police.

At a school with over 25,000 students, 22News asked UMass Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs Enku Gelaye if she was pleased with those numbers. “When you think about the bodies in motion today, several thousand. Overall, yes, in the balance, we did okay.”

Amherst Town Manager Pete Heckenbleikner, credits the success of this year’s Blarney Blowout to town officials, emergency responders, bar and restaurant owners for their cooperation.

Amherst’s Chief Livingstone told 22News there will be a couple hundred police officers on duty Saturday night, staged in various locations.

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