Aftermath of the “Blarney Blowout”

AMHERST, Mass. (WWLP) – Amherst Police arrested 43 people Saturday during the day when the annual gathering called “Blarney Blowout” near UMass Amherst got out of control.

Amherst Police will continue to keep an eye on apartment complexes near Meadow Street where many UMass Amherst students live. Earlier Saturday an annual off-campus gathering called the Blarney Blowout ended in dozens of arrests.

Amherst Police were on high alert all day Saturday. The Blarney Blowout, an annual off-campus party held near UMass Amherst on the Saturday before Spring Break, quickly got out of control.
By the end of the weekend, police haarrested at least 73 people and broke up a crowd of 4,000 party-goers.

Amherst Police Captain Jennifer Gundersen told 22News the large crowd damaged cars, destroyed light poles and threw beer cans and bottles at police officers.

UMass Amherst spokesman Ed Blaguszewski told 22News most of the chaos happened off campus, but students who were arrested will have to meet with the Dean of Students office. Some of them could be suspended or expelled.

Police and nearby residents say the size of the party threatens public safety. But students told 22News most people who attend the gathering do follow the school’s code of conduct.

“The grounds aren’t covered with litter… we are just trying to have a good time and keep the peace, you know,” said one UMass student.

Sophomore Duncan Robertson told 22News,” The same thing with after the Red Sox won the World Series: the cops came and did the same thing, and it was overreacting again.”

Most people arrested Saturday will face various charges, including disorderly conduct, liquor law violations, failure to disperse and inciting a riot.

Four police officers were hurt while trying to disperse the crowd. They suffered minor injuries.

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