UND students' booze-soaked Springfest celebration is basically canceled

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Springfest at the University of North Dakota is essentially canceled.

The 21-plus event is typically held at University Park the last weekend before finals. In recent years it has become synonymous with binge drinking, out-of-control house parties, and controversial actions (last year some students wore "Siouxper Drunk" t-shirts), Grand Forks Mayor Michael Brown and UND President Robert Kelly noted in an opinion piece in the Grand Forks Herald.

Rhombus Guys pizza, the event's usual organizers, says it won't be hosting Springfest this year, the Grand Forks Herald reports, and university officials are hoping to limit alcohol consumption during that time.

Brown and Kelly, along with the Community and Campus Committee to Reduce High-Risk Alcohol Use, are hoping to limit binge drinking over the weekend because of the risks it poses to students and the community.

In the opinion piece, they asked the Grand Forks City Council to not approve any special alcohol permits for the parks and not allow alcohol consumption in the parks that weekend. They also reached out to local bars and asked them not to offer the extreme drink specials, and have said officials are instructed to shut down any house party that gets out of hand.

But Student Body President Tanner Franklin told the Grand Forks Herald that even if alcohol permits aren't issued, students will still gather and drink that weekend.

UND finals week begins Monday May 11, according to the university's website. It's not known if the university plans to schedule any events to replace Springfest the weekend of May 8, but there are some performances going on in the area, including a Luke Bryan concert, which will help set the stage for an alternate Springfest, Brown and Kelly wrote.

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