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Queen’s “FoCo” draws thousands of students for second weekend in a row

Thousands gathered for a second weekend in Kingston’s University District for “Fauxcoming”, before it was shut down by police.  

While the neighborhood was relatively quiet in the morning, the crowds grew by the thousands at around 1:30 pm. 

By 2:30 p.m, crowds grew to approximately 3,000 people according to the Kingston Police. An Aggravated Nuisance Gathering was then declared on Aberdeen Street. Under the order, students who fail to comply are subject to a $2,000 administrative monetary penalty.

The Scene on Aberdeen at 2:00pm.

Police then required all students to stay on the sidewalks. Any students seen crossing the street were detained.

The unsanctioned gatherings quickly dispersed and moved to other areas of the University District. 

By 2:41, multiple streets were blocked off by police, including Divison and William St, Division and Earl Street, and University Avenue and Johnson St.

The blockages caused several bus routes to be suspended during the emergency orders. Dozens of arrests were made throughout the afternoon.

Photo by: Grace Sims

While the emergency order was lifted at 5 p.m, gatherings continued into the night. At around 10 pm, over 1,000 people gathered at Victoria Park. Fireworks were set off and fire extinguishers were seen on the ground.

While crowds were large, Kingston Police were relatively happy that things went smoothly. Police reported that there was a minor injury of a police officer during street parties. 

Students, however, were still concerned with the “over-policing” of the University District. 

One student reports that after police responded to an “understandably” loud house party two doors down from their house, they had walked over to their house and laid fines on his housemates. The fines, given for contravening a nouse bylaw, were $200 each for a total of $800, for listening to music on their porch. 

“To be perfectly clear, there was no party here by any stretch of the imagination. This abuse of power is going to mean scrimping on groceries for a month or more,” the student said. 

“Residents of Kingston of all ages use Saturdays to decompress from the week and what was going on tonight was no different than that,” the student told YGK News.

Leading up to the unsanctioned event, Queen’s organized a campaign encouraging students to “think again” before attending the street parties.

“Large crowds can have a mind of their own, quickly becoming dangerous and unpredictable, especially when excessive alcohol is involved,” wrote Queen’s University in a social media post. “Think again before you attend any large party. Keep your gatherings small and safe.”

Some community members also took the day to respond to misogynistic messaging that was shown in front of a student house on October 16th. Banners that took a stand against misogyny were hung up across Kingston’s Victoria Park on Saturday morning. 

Photos by: Max Kislitsyn

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