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Our campus is blockaded off today, in a desparate attempt by the administration to stop people from celebrating April 20th, which has become one of the most celebrated holidays of the year here.

3 days ago, the Vice Chancellor sent out this email to all students about the draconian security measures being imposed this year to ensure that nobody fires up a phatty on campus...



April 17, 2008

To: All Students
Fr: Vice Chancellor Felicia E. McGinty, Ed.D
Re: April 20th, 2008

Dear UCSC Students,

UCSC is committed to providing a safe, healthy environment in which our
students, staff and faculty can thrive. To that end, I write to you
regarding a non-University sanctioned event that has become concerning for
our community. Often referred to as "Four-Twenty" or "4/20," this event
revolves around the use of marijuana and other illegal drugs. Over the past
four years, we have seen this non-sanctioned event grow in numbers from
several hundred people to over 5,000 people last year.

This activity has become a concern to the University administration, to our
campus community, parents, prospective students and families, and members
of the greater community. We are particularly concerned about the sheer
number of people who may show up to participate in this event.
Participants in the past have been UCSC students, some middle school and
high school minors, and many non-affiliates with no investment in our
community.

In light of the large number of unplanned people who may arrive on our
campus this weekend, several measures will be implemented to ensure the
safety of the greater campus community. I want to provide all students
with a summary of these measures so that you may plan accordingly in
advance of the weekend. I regret the inconvenience these measures may
cause.

o Campus Access and Kiosk Gate Program: The campus will be closed to
non-affiliates during Sunday, April 20. The kiosks at the two entrances to
campus will be staffed from regular Saturday evening hours, beginning at 8
p.m., through all day Sunday, ending, Monday at 6 a.m. Proof of
affiliation will be required, per standard operating procedures. The West
Entrance to campus will be closed to inbound vehicular traffic on Sunday.
The Main Entrance will be open that day, but campus personnel will restrict
vehicular access to people who have UCSC parking permits or who can show
evidence they are attending sanctioned campus events that day.

Students who live off campus and wish to drive onto campus during this
period will need to present both a University Parking Permit and a
Student ID.

Guests attending pre-approved campus events must also have a parking permit
or park in metered spaces.

Drivers and passengers who can't prove that they have a legitimate reason
to be on campus on Sunday will be turned away at the main gate. People can
anticipate that there will be delays at the Main Entrance's kiosk.

o Alcohol and illegal substances: Possession, consumption or sale of
alcoholic beverages and illegal substances are prohibited.

o Guests: Your guests and their behavior on campus are your
responsibility. Violation of federal, state, or University policy by you
and/or your guests, are subject to the Student Code of Conduct. Please
refer to the following web sites for specific detail:
http://www2.ucsc.edu/judicial/handbook.shtml

o University Housing Guest Policy: For students who live in
University Housing, the Guest Policy for student residences will be
suspended on Saturday and Sunday night, April 19 and April 20. Residents
will not be permitted to have overnight guests on these evenings.
Exceptions to this restriction should be made in consultation with your
respective Coordinator for Residential Education or Residential Manager.

o Student Behavior: Behaviors that are violations of federal and
state law and University policy, as outlined in the Student Handbook,
including violations related to the possession, consumption, distribution,
or sale of marijuana will be subject to citing by University Police or
referral to the Student Judicial Affairs by Residential Staff, Community
Safety Officers or other campus officials. Please refer to the following
web sites for specific detail:
http://www2.ucsc.edu/judicial/handbook.shtml

o Parking: Parking permits will be required in all campus lots
throughout the weekend, even in those that typically require no permits on
weekends. The parking restriction will include evening hours on Friday,
Saturday, and Sunday nights. (If you need to park on campus this weekend
and do not currently have a permit, you will need to purchase one by 6 p.m.
on Friday.) Residential Students who wish to park on campus throughout the
weekend will be required to have a parking permit on your car or you may be
ticketed.

Parking will be strictly enforced on Empire Grade road, campus roads and
all campus parking lots. For safety and welfare of drivers and
pedestrians, any cars parked on Empire Grade road on Sunday, April 20, will
be towed at the owner's expense.

o Campus transportation: Metro bus drivers, at the University's
request, will not bring riders onto campus on Sunday. The only "campus"
stop, coming to and from UCSC, will be the one adjacent to the Main
Entrance. (If disability transportation is needed as a result of this
restriction, special van service on campus can be requested at this one bus
stop.) There will be no on-campus shuttle service during the day on Sunday.

o Vending: Vendors of food and merchandise will not be permitted on
campus, including vending from any of our campus members or groups, without
permission and according to our vending regulations. Please refer to the
following web site:
http://www2.ucsc.edu/judicial/Comm_Act_Policy.pdf

While these measures may be an inconvenience for many in our community, I
am hopeful that they will assist the campus in managing the sizeable crowd
that may gather throughout the weekend and on Sunday. Again, our goal is
to manage the crowd, discourage behaviors that are policy violations and
address safety risks. I am hopeful that this information will also assist
you in coordinating your plans for the weekend.

Thank you for you time, consideration, and compliance.


A summary for those who don't feel like clicking behind the cut:

Smoking pot in the Porter meadows at UCSC has become such a popular annual tradition on April 20th, it attracted over 5000 participants last year, including hot dog vendors, musicians performing, and tents set up selling refreshments. And of course, a giant cloud of pot large enough to get you fully high just from walking around in it. It has been growing each year, to get up to this level. As I understand it, the administration has always just looked the other way in the past. But I guess this year, they decided it is now a big enough problem they need to shut the party down. So they sent us this email saying that the entire campus is closed on April 20th. They blockaded off one entrance entirely, and the other entrance is guarded with about 6 police officers. The city busses which usually go on campus as a part of their normal route, are forbidden to drive on campus today. The only people allowed in are those who can show both a student ID and a parking pass, and have some official business on campus. Although you don't have to say much about what that business is. I was worried I wouldn't be able to get on today, as my main reason for coming to campus was that I don't have internet access at home right now. I waited in the long line of cars trying to get in, and then told the cops that my official business was that I was a graduate student and needed to conduct research on campus today (partially true... I did do about 30 minutes of research today, but I've been here the rest of the day catching up on lj! and the research part I could have done at home)

All visitor privledges have been suspended for campus residents for both last nignt and tonight. I was thinking of heading over to the meadows at 4:20pm to see if anyone was there, but I'm sure the place is crawling with cops. So I decided to just enjoy my internet access and stay in my office. Cablemodem is getting set up at home on Tuesday. I guess I'll find out later from friends whether I missed out. I heard there was going to be a March onto campus starting from somewhere on the West side, but I don't know if they successfully made it past the law enforcement.

The cops gave me a special event parking pass that says "April 20th Parking Pass" in huge letters on a red background. I'm going to save it as memorabilia :)

This has been spoonless, reporting to you from inside the 4/20 blockade.

P.S. I just noticed that the first picture in the Wikipedia entry for 420 is a picture of the event on our campus last year (which I of course attended).

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Comments

( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
ankh_f_n_khonsu
Apr. 21st, 2008 05:39 pm (UTC)

Vancouver 4-20, 2007


This year they expected more than 10,000 people. I think that might be a bit low, because it was absolutely nuts.

Anonymous tried to make an appearance, but it was far too crowded for us to stick together. :o
killtacular
Apr. 21st, 2008 07:01 pm (UTC)
ahh, that is kind of sad. I've never been anywhere near your part of california and even I have heard of that party/gathering thing.
snarkyshark2
Apr. 21st, 2008 10:55 pm (UTC)
When I got that e-mail I was laughing pretty hard.
(Deleted comment)
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )

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