The city of Madison will no longer permit or sanction a raucous annual party which has been marred by violence and excessive drinking. Madison Police are gearing up for May 4th, the day the annual Mifflin Street Block Party takes place. But, Lieutenant Dave McCaw said this year, it will not be a sanctioned event.
“We’re not calling off anything. In the past we’ve responded to people/organizers who ask for a permit for street use that day and have an organized event. Like last year, nobody has come forward asking for that, so, there is no event. We just don’t know what that means. We have 40 years of history to deal with… but last year wasn’t a sanctioned event either. We spent a lot of effort with the officers that were there to keep Mifflin Street open, because there was no permit, and that was done.”
In a letter from Officer Grant Humerickhouse, a Langdon Neighborhood Officer, states that the toll of the Mifflin Street Block Party far outweighs any community benefit. He’s also encouraging any residents considering hosting a party in the downtown area on or around May 4th, to reconsider.
Lieutenant McCaw said that’s the message year round anyway. “If you are large and loud…you’re going to attract us and you can look for citation.” McCaw suggested people look for other things to do the day of May 4th. The block party has been marred by violence on occasion in the past – including the stabbings of two people in 2011 for which a Green Bay man was sentenced to two-and-a-half years in prison.
“This event is gone and if someone wants to work with the city on having an event for students in the city, we would be more than welcome to doing it but we will insist that it’s at a location that is safe for all people.”
In addition, sanctions will be coming from the UW Dean of Students for any students arrested or cited.
READ: Mifflin Street Letter from MPD
Chandra Lynn, WIBA