Students of UCSB,
Halloween 2011 is quickly approaching. For you freshmen, you’re probably chomping at the bit to finally get to experience Halloween in Isla Vista … and for you seniors, you’re probably over all of the shenanigans and trying to book your tickets for Escape From Wonderland. Whatever the case may be, whatever your plans are for Halloween, there are some things you need to know to best prepare yourself for the coming weekend.
Halloween is a great time for many of us and it’s an I.V. franchise that has given us national notoriety, for better or for worse. I’m sure you have lots of people begging you to let them stay with you over the weekend so they can experience the revelry firsthand. It might be tempting to have visitors, but the fact is out-of-towners are a big problem for I.V. The army of tourists that invades I.V. for Halloween forces the county to spend a lot of money on providing extra ambulances, extra fire trucks and lots of additional police for the area. Last year, Santa Barbara County spent about $700,000 on Halloween operations. That’s money that could have been spent on improving lighting in Isla Vista, repairing the damaged roads or improving our parks, but you get the idea. So help me help I.V. and keep Halloween a LOCAL event this year. If you ask most people who have seen Halloween in I.V., they’ll tell you the last thing we need for Halloween is more out-of-towners who can’t handle their alcohol.
Additionally, some of you will be tempted to drink … a lot. I can’t say I blame you. I’ve had some of the best times in my UCSB career during Halloween weekends. Whatever your plan is, just keep it classy. Maybe instead of taking that third handle pull of the night, just lay low for a while. Maybe before you chase your shots with a Four Loko, think about how the rest of the night might play out. Keep in mind that there will be more cops, more citations given and more risks this weekend than any other weekend in I.V. If you need to hydrate or use the bathroom, there will be public restrooms and free water at the bottom of the I.V. loop (across the street from where Super Cuca’s once stood).
Remember, for those of you who live on Del Playa, as well as the north-south streets (e.g. Camino Pescadero) south of Trigo, you need to remove your cars from the street by 3 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 28, or the county will tow them. Don’t forget about the Festival Ordinance, which prevents any music playing for the entire weekend. There are a lot of laws that are specific to Halloween weekend, so stay smart and avoid getting a ticket by knowing all the rule changes. For more information on the parking situation, the laws and everything else related to Halloween, check out our website at ucsbhalloween.com.
That being said, have a great Halloween, good luck on midterms and, as always, feel free to contact me with any questions or concerns.
Tim Benson is the Associated Students External Vice President for Local Affairs.