OSWEGO, NY – The end of the spring semester of classes at SUNY Oswego last year was celebrated by some students, residents and visitors participating in the “Bridge Street Run.”
This unsanctioned, event in the city of Oswego was the source of many areas of concern, ranging from disruptive behavior to dangerous and unhealthy decision making, according to Mayor Tom Gillen.
“This year, the city of Oswego fully supports SUNY Oswego’s efforts to redirect the celebratory atmosphere by presenting the SUNY Oswego Ozfest on May 8. Our hope is that, by working together, we can develop this event into a dynamic and fun weekend that will take advantage of all that Oswego has to offer, while providing the structure and oversight necessary to help reduce the problem behaviors of years past,” the mayor told Oswego County Today. “The city of Oswego has always encouraged a good relationship with SUNY Oswego and their students. They are a part of our community and we invite them, as well as all residents and visitors, to come to Oswego and enjoy what we have to offer. All that we ask, for everyone’s safety and well-being, is that it is enjoyed responsibly.”
Continuing through the end of the spring semester, Oswego City Police and University Police will be going door to door in neighborhoods with a high density of college residents to discuss the consequences of poor decision making and disruptive behavior.
Some of the points that are being reinforced in the pamphlets that are being handed out are a review of conduct that will draw police attention including but not limited to:
• Large Gatherings
• Amplified Music
• Public/Underage Consumption of Alcohol
• Drug Use
• Violent/ Disruptive Behavior
Tips on how to be a good neighbor including but not limited to:
• Respect your neighbors and their right to enjoy a quiet, clean, and peaceful neighborhood
• Don’t have large, unmanageable, loud parties, especially when neighbors are trying to sleep.
• Keep your apartment / home and your yard clean and free of debris.
• Maintain and follow the correct procedure for trash / recyclable goods.
• Be friendly and considerate of your neighbors.
• Be aware of the parking needs of neighbors and all of the applicable restrictions throughout the city.
Last year, the Oswego Common Council voted unanimously to “ban” the Bridge Street Run.
According to Council President Eric Van Buren, “We know that we can’t stop someone from donning a white T-shirt and legally walking from establishment to establishment. Our intent, at the time, was to emphasize that we, as a city, do not and cannot condone some of the activities associated with the Bridge Street Run. However, our resolution should be seen as more than just a symbolic gesture, it should be viewed as a warning and a call to take notice for those who may still choose to participate in disruptive or unruly behavior that it will not be tolerated and violators could face ticketing, arrest, and if applicable, on-campus sanctions. The collaboration between our police department and the college is a very promising sign of future partnerships between the college and the city. I thank both Oswego City Police Chief DeCaire and University Police Chief Rossi for their efforts in aiding the public with regard to this issue and SUNY Oswego President Stanley for her attention to this matter.”
In addition to the community outreach efforts, leading up to the SUNY Oswego Ozfest event in May, the Oswego City Police Department will be visiting local establishments that are engaged in the sales of alcohol to highlight some of the state and local laws regarding alcohol licensees and their legal responsibilities.
Oswego Police will be offering to provide one-on-one question and answer sessions with each of the business owners and/or staff and will provide reference material made available through the New York State Liquor Authority regarding the local and state regulations.
The information that will be provided is intended to assist in improving upon already successful strategies employed by most Oswego businesses.
Oswego Police wish to remind residents, students, visitors and guests of the city of Oswego that in anticipation of a large influx of people gathering in and around the city of Oswego for the upcoming SUNY Oswego Ozfest, the Oswego City Police Department will have extra officers on duty being supplemented by law enforcement officers from outside agencies.
The officers will be assigned to various details including marked and unmarked police vehicle patrol, foot patrol, ATV patrols and dedicated neighborhood patrols specifically assigned to target loud or disruptive parties.