'There were parties everywhere': Acadia homecoming sees off-campus partying lead to on-campus testing
Another homecoming weekend at a Nova Scotia university has led to a raft of tickets for partying in the streets.
Acadia University's homecoming festivities took over the town of Wolfville, N.S. on Saturday night, with students partying in the streets, and on one landlord's roof.
"Right now, it's the windows of two properties that I own here," says landlord Don Rafuse, who's Wolfville property was damaged during Saturday night's partying.
RCMP moved in and handed out a total of 37 fines, the majority for violating liquor laws.
"That may include under-age drinking, or illegal possession of alcohol, consuming in public, public intoxication, that sort of thing," says Const. Jeff Wilson of the Kings District RCMP.
No one was fined for violating Public Health orders, but the off-campus parties have led to on-campus testing.
Just as Dalhousie University did a few weeks ago, Acadia is advising students not to go to class until they get tested.
"We're taking an approach that's unique to Acadia, but we definitely listen to, learn from, and get guided by what other universities are doing, because we're all facing the same situation really," says Acadia University president Peter Ricketts.
"I anticipate the numbers to go up," adds Caroliina Landry, Acadia's occupational health nurse. "There should be a good uptick. I put out a message this morning."
Acadia student Sean Hanlon says he was in the crowd on Saturday. While he believes vandals should be punished, he doesn't think party-goers should be.
"Saturday night was very hectic, there were parties everywhere," says Hanlon. "I saw a lot of people and everybody just seemed to be having a good time, relaxing from the semi-stressful school year start."
The school plans to work with the RCMP to gather more information, but says the disciplinary process could take "weeks to months."
"Taking it out on individual students, just because they were there … that would not be an appropriate response from the university," says Ricketts.
The Acadia homecoming comes just three weeks after Dalhousie's homecoming saw Halifax Regional Police hand out 41 summary offence tickets, after a day of rowdy partying on Sept. 25.
Dalhousie University says it is continuing its investigation into those students' actions, but won't reveal details citing privacy.