The Illini’s “Unofficial” State Patrick’s Day
Every year, we Penn Staters take pride in our celebration of State Patrick’s Day. The fact that we chose to celebrate the holiday famous for drinking copious amounts of alcohol on the weekend, instead of March 17 (on a Tuesday this year), is a testament to our awesomeness and respect for our own education.
As it turns out, Penn State students aren’t the only ones to celebrate an alternate St. Patrick’s Day. At the University of Illinois, the Illini have an “Unofficial St. Patrick’s Day,” which will occur this year on Friday, March 6th. While decidedly less clever than our name for the alternate holiday, it has created a bit of a ruckus among Illinois administrators. A letter sent home to parents of students by the Chancellor of the University of Illinois urges parents to speak with their children, emphasizing safety and responsibility.
Apparently, the letter sent out this year to parents marks the third year in a row that a letter has been sent home regarding the event. This letter argues that “Unofficial St. Patrick’s Day,” is not sanctioned by the University and leads to “disruptions in classrooms and damage to campus property.” As it turns out, parents of Illini are actually speaking with their children about this event in response to the Chancellor’s letter according to this article in the Daily Illini. You can find the letter in its entirety here.
“Unofficial St. Patrick’s Day” was started by an owner of several bars around the University of Illinois campus. As the tradition of holding this alternate St. Patrick’s day continues, the University of Illinois is taking matters into their own hands by asking the nearby town of Champaign to raise the entry age to bars on the day of the event. Also, the University is instituting a strict no-guest policy in the residence halls on March 6th.
As an aside, be careful this weekend while celebrating State Patty’s Day. Drinking way too much green-colored alcohol may turn your pee a delightfully radioactive green color, but don’t overdo it so much to the point where President Spanier needs to send a letter home to mommy and daddy :-)