Waiting in vain

Syracuse police monitor Euclid Avenue despite student attendance at SU Showcase events on campus.

It was just another Monday on Euclid Avenue in Syracuse on April 19. Syracuse University students walked to and from class — some dragging their legs — while others quickly darted between slow walkers to avoid being late.  

But there was something unusual about the scene. Students heading to class curiously looked up and down the street as they noticed six police cars from the Syracuse Police Department and Department of Public Safety scattered about. Some officers casually leaned against their cars, while others sat in the driver’s seat of their cars closely observing students.

Photo: Brad Winckelmann
SU students carry a puppet called "Doctor Bird," in a performance by Puppets and Community and Art-in-Motion during SU Showcase.

The officers were there for a party. Not to attend, but rather to break it up. SU Showcase, an academic day of lectures, dedications and presentations, was scheduled Monday on campus. But for the past three years, the day formerly called MayFest was known for its block party on Euclid Avenue, which attracted hundreds of students for a day off of partying, drinking and barbecuing before finals.

This year, officers spent the afternoon waiting in vain for the SU Showcase protest in the form of the infamous MayFest block party. But to students, it was just another Monday.

Students attended class as usual, as well as some SU Showcase events held throughout campus. This year, SU Showcase’s theme was sustainability, in honor of the 40th anniversary of Earth Day. Students were treated to events such as a puppet performance on the Quad by Art-in-Motion and Puppets and Community. In the large-scale performance, students of the Soling class used giant puppets as a way to highlight the sustainability of dreams.

Other SU Showcase events included the Rain Garden dedication, a session on green jobs, and various presentations and lectures on environmental topics held in large tents on the Quad.

Despite their waiting, some of the officers stationed on Euclid Avenue said they were happy to see students going to class and attending SU Showcase events. However, they said they will continue to patrol the area throughout the week. Police closely monitored the street to ensure students did not break the agreement between the university and students regarding the showcase.

Students will celebrate MayFest in Walnut Park with music, food and drinks provided by the university on April 30, the official date SU officials and Student Association agreed upon. 

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