Residents on pub crawl route worried about safety

CREATED Mar 6, 2013

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MILWAUKEE - Safety concerns involving thousands of people getting set for a pre-St. Patrick's day pub crawl on North Ave, and people who live nearby are also worried about having to clean up the mess.

You can expect about 5,000 pub crawlers on North Ave. and on Water Street this Saturday. Neighbors said they aren't against the pub crawl, but think people drink way too much and leave trash all over their lawn.

"In the past people have urinated on our house, people have wondered into the backyard drunk," said John Bleidorn.

Bleidorn lives in the Murray Hill neighborhood and is petitioning the city to water down pub crawls like the Shamrock Shuffle.

"The focus of the event is to get your money's worth in the drink tickets, to become drunk and disorderly," he said.

The organizers for the pub crawl do not have to get a permit, but Alderman Nik Kovac met with police today to find ways to control the crowd.

"Once you have 5000 and once the theme of the event is get so drunk you stumble or shuffle, it's a problem,” Kovac said.

After two deaths in three years during Milwaukee pub crawls, the city is taking a serious look at how they can keep events fun, but safe. Police will be keeping tabs on which bars over serve party goers.

"Make sure that everyone has a good time, but to make sure that good time doesn't become someone else's bad time,” Kovac added. “Or worse yet, becomes fatal."

Kovac says there will be a heavy police presence during the event, but Bleidorn and his wife are so fed up with the event that they are going out of town this weekend to avoid the crowds.

The organizer did not return our calls, but he did meet with Kovac and MPD.