State Patty’s DayFeb 29th, 2012 | By La Vie | Category: Features
It is, however, the number one attraction during spring semester for college students everywhere.
Here at Penn State University in State College, it is a student-created drinking holiday in its sixth year. The three-day event began last Friday.
In 2007, a small group of students who just wanted to share a weekend got together before their spring break, which fell over the actual St. Patrick’s Day holiday. It became a campus wide event the following year and placed PSU on the party destination map. Now, six years later, students from colleges all over the east coast are attending this celebration, including students from our very own, Lebanon Valley College.
“This holiday has gotten worse with each continuing year of the Patty’s Day tradition,” says State College Chief of Police Tom King. As if the 40,000 students attending University Park weren’t enough, Facebook and talk of the past State Patty’s Day attraction draws thousands of non-PSU students into the festivities each year. Last year, 234 arrests were made over the course of three days, and from 40 colleges other than PSU. University of Delaware hosted a bus trip to State College specifically for the festivities. This year, police were doing everything they could to shut down this eventful weekend by shutting down bars and liquor stores for the entire weekend. However, Penn State Pride carried the tradition on.
“State Patty’s Day is pretty much a non stop party from Thursday night to Sunday.” says one Penn State student, midday Saturday. Take a walk around the streets at 2 p.m. Saturday and there are people already at their limits. There are young girls walking into street signs and even students walking carelessly in front of cars.
Mother Nature was not in favor of the 2012 celebration, but that did not stop the thousands crowding campus. Despite the high winds whirling through the streets and the unexpected snow squalls, students still began drinking at 8:30 on Saturday morning, and were clearly intoxicated by noon.
LVC freshman Michelle Babka, attended the celebration for the first time. “It was more amazing than I even expected. Everyone was saying that I shouldn’t bother going because it wasn’t going to be the same. False. Best weekend ever,” Babka gushes.
There were, of course, less smart people walking the streets of College Ave. An older man, clearly out of college, was walking around stealing parking tickets, while at around 3:15 p.m. Saturday, a young man was struck by a vehicle that he ran in front of. No word has been released on his injuries so far. Despite police efforts to shut down the weekend, still over 225 arrests were made.
A group of my friends met a student-aged male Saturday morning, who had been intoxicated since 6 p.m. Friday night. He had not slept and was walking around to meet strangers after getting separated from his group.
The streets were flooded with a mix of both drunk and sober people.
One Penn State student observed, “State needed this weekend after everything it has been through; from losing Jo-Pa to raising millions at THON.”
By Mallory Minor ’15, Contributing Writer (email@example.com)