Aggieville prepares for Fake Patty’s Day

Bartenders prepare drinks on Fake Patty's Day, March 5, 2016. (File Photo by Austin Fuller | The Collegian)

For one weekend out of the year, a town that bleeds purple goes green.

Manhattan is known for hosting the annual event called Fake Patty’s Day, which will be taking place on Saturday. Now in its 10th year, the event has been ranked one of the top 10 parties in the country, according to Aggieville’s Facebook page for the event.

According to the WIBW article “Manhattan celebrates Fake Patty’s Day,” thousands of people come to Manhattan for the event.

The main component of the event tends to be the all-day binge drinking. Because of this, there are a lot of concerns that need to be addressed and preparations that need to be made, Josh Kyle, captain of the Riley County Police Department, said.

Aggieville will be roped off to contain a lot of the drinking activity for those who are of legal age. Minors can enter the area, but only to shop and play the various games that will be set out.

“The thing that leads to problems, and this is true of everyone, is over-consumption of alcohol,” Kyle said. “You can’t turn around without running into an officer.”

Last year, the number of DUIs and the number of people hospitalized had increased from past years, Kyle said. Rooftop parties and even some drug activity in the neighborhoods close to Aggieville were a major cause of concern as well.

To make sure they have all their bases covered, every police officer from Riley County will be working that day, and the department will even be getting some help from officers from surrounding counties.

“The No. 1 thing is to make sure that you don’t think this is a free-for-all,” Kyle said. “All laws are still in effect.”

Not only do police prepare for the event, but the local businesses do too. The shop and restaurant employees in Aggieville work weeks in advance to prepare for their many customers and to get the area looking Fake Patty’s appropriate, said Shannon Hayden, senior in graphic design.

Hayden has been working at Thread, a custom t-shirt shop, for two years. She is no stranger to the crazy and intense busyness that this time of year brings. The store started to sell all things green on Feb. 25 in preparation.

“Really, we just get hyped,” Hayden said. “We are hyped. We don’t get to deal with the horrible part of Fake Patty’s Day, like the drinking. But we get to deal with the people getting gear for it and having fun and looking fun.”

While security is at an all-time high and businesses are focused on giving people a great experience, some participants of the event find it to be more than just a day of drinking. To them it feels like an event they have to set aside for friends and fun, just like any other traditional holiday.

“My favorite part of Fake Patty’s Day is being with my friends and just enjoying the day,” Preston Miller, junior in geology, said. “It’s a great social holiday that, if celebrated in a safe way, can be a lot of fun.”