Published: Thursday, May 20, 2010
Updated: Tuesday, January 18, 2011 15:01
The residents of the off-campus "Maples" community know how to throw a party. "Cinco de Maples" 2010 was fun, safe and lasted longer than even the most experienced partiers could handle. After attending Maples' largest annual celebration, I had to get the word out about how they did it. This year's event was a complete 180 from last year's disaster, and was the best day party I've ever attended.
The recipe for the ideal party is simple: take one part communication with the Santa Clara Police, add two parts security and safety precautions, and throw in a dash of good will and charity.
A week prior to the scheduled date, several Maples residents met with Sergeant Jerry Rodriguez to learn how to make Cinco de Maples a fun, yet safe, party. The police asked for party-throwers to enact several precautions to assure the police of students' safety.
Security guards were to cover the entrance and exit of the block. All neighbors within the vicinity of the party had to be notified of the upcoming event. Finally, one person from every house had to remain sober and act as a contact for the police in case of emergency.
But after the debacle that was last year's Cinco de Maples, the party was shut down about an hour after it began, the Maples community went several steps further in order to ensure success.
They made sure each house had a water jug to keep partiers hydrated and bought a porta-potty so students wouldn't wander away from the party in search of somewhere to take care of business.
But by far the most admirable aspect of the party is that proceeds were donated to the students who lost everything in the recent off-campus house fire.
This year's Cinco de Maples proves that students can have fun and stay safe while partying. Maples resident Siobhan Curley, who spearheaded the Cinco de Maples efforts, agreed that the event was a win-win situation for students and cops. "The students had a blast and the police would rather have one contained party than a bunch of fragmented ones," Curley said.
I applaud the Maples community for providing Santa Clara students with a great Saturday and, more importantly, for assisting their fellow classmates in a time of need. The university has provided assistance to those who lost their house, but it means a lot when students show they care too.
Cinco de Maples has set a precedent for future off-campus parties. Next time you're throwing a party, consider that the best parties are ones that are controlled and therefore long lasting. If you charge an entrance fee, donate money to a charity or significant cause.
A final word of advice for future party-throwers: learn from this year's Cinco de Maples, create a safe and fun party for all.
Chris Stamas is a junior political science major.