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(Guelph's top 10 stories of the year) #5: Definitely not a happy Homecoming

A party that attracted 4,000 people fueled a rowdy and messy Homecoming celebration September
The mess left behind by a party on Chancellors Way during Homecoming 2017. Twitter photo

(Starting Dec. 22 and ending Dec. 31, GuelphToday will count down its top 10 stories of 2017.)

The annual University of Guelph Homecoming celebration turned sour this year.

Fuelled by unseasonably warm temperatures and a party on Chancellors Way that attracted around 4,000 people, rowdy behaviour, a huge amount of garbage and occasionally damaged property were left in the wake of the event on Sept. 23.

Police and bylaw officials dealt with 123 noise complaints before 7 p.m. on the Saturday as parties were held throughout south end neighbourhoods.

Police resources were stretched to the limit by the behaviour, even more so due to a fatal accident and a home invasion that happened elsewhere in the city that day.

Mayor Cam Guthrie took to Twitter to express his initial displeasure, posting a four-minute video in which he spoke of how disappointed he was with the behaviour and mess left behind.

A meeting was held that included University of Guelph President Franco Vaccarino, Police Chief Jeff DeRuyter, bylaw officials, representatives of south Guelph neighbourhood groups and the mayor.

Vaccarino issued an apology and said more would be done to curb the behaviour next year.

A town hall meeting was held in the south end to discuss the issue, with over 100 people showing up, many of them angry.

“We’re not interested in what happened, we want to know what’s going to be done about it in the future,” yelled one person as a U of G official went over the events of the day during the town hall meeting.

The U of G  and the city pledged to be more prepared in 2018 and several new initiatives are planned.