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Saturday, December 27, 2014 |  Madison, WI: 34.0° F  Overcast
The Daily


Liability for the Madison Halloween party on State Street: Trick? Or Treat?

As All Hallows Eve creeps near, local taverns nail down the valuables and prime the taps. Soon-to-be drunken revelers brainstorm for inspired costumes. And the elected officials of our fair city scramble to cover their bases and leave no safety measure undone. While much has been made of the city's first-ever attempt to rein in and even organize the madness, one aspect of the new face of Halloween in Madison needs attention: Who, exactly, is responsible if things go wrong? >More
 Madison police captain discusses approach to State Street Halloween party

"Halloween this year is an experiment," says George Twigg, spokesperson for Madison Mayor Dave Cieslewicz. "The mayor wants to get away from past years and look at a new way of doing things." >More
 City officials comment on CRASH Madison Halloween texting system

Given the novelty of the concept, Phil Ejercito was skeptical about how the city would react to CRASH Madison. This is a system to broadcast text messages about the status of the Halloween party on State Street, including information about the weather, entertainment venues, crowd sizes, and dangerous situations, among other things. How is the city responding the texting plans announced by Ejercito? >More
 A Halloween Madison 2006 and Freakfest on State Street FAQ

Halloween is one of the most significant events of the year in the city of Madison. For several decades now, crowds of costumed revelers have gathered on State Street, the central axis in the heart of the city that connects the University of Wisconsin to the State Capitol. This event typically occurs on the weekend immediately preceding Oct. 31, with the larger party occurring on the Saturday night and early Sunday morning of the event. Over the years, the size, scope, and safety of these parties has ebbed and flowed, in some years making it one of the largest Halloween events in the country. Questions and answers as supplied by the organizations involved in organizing aspects of Halloween in Madison follow below. >More
 Phil Ejercito discusses CRASH Madison and Halloween on State Street

Sousveillance is a mouthful. It's Friday afternoon, and downtown Madison resident Phil Ejercito is talking about CRASH Madison, the text messaging service that he is in the midst of organizing for Halloween on State Street. When it's up and running, Ejercito plans on broadcasting text messages about everything a Halloween reveler on State Street would want to know: weather conditions, crowd size, stage times, and dangerous conditions created by both partiers and police, everything provided by people in the midst of it all. This, he says, is an exercise in sousveillance. The Daily Page spoke with Ejercito about CRASH Madison and his plans to promote sousveillance on Halloween. Both questions and answers follow below. >More
 CRASH Madison to provide texting service for Halloween

When the Madison Common Council voted on Sep. 19 to establish a fencing and admission system for the 2006 Halloween parties on State Street, there were only five people who stood up to publicly speak on the matter. Four spoke in support of the city's plan, while only one person opposed it. This was Phil Ejercito -- a downtown resident, member of the city's Housing Committee, progressive activist and technology enthusiast -- who criticized the plans as poorly conceived and potentially dangerous, particularly in terms of liability and the safety of neighborhoods adjacent to State Street. In the weeks since that meeting, Ejercito has turned his criticisms into action by organizing CRASH Madison, a service to provide text messages about and relevant to the Halloween festivities set for the last weekend of October. >More
 Bands announced for the Madison Halloween party on State Street

Amid a brisk wind and intermittent flurries, promoter John Kunz and the founders of the Halloween Action Committee announced a preliminary band line-up for "Freakfest on State Street." Seven bands were announced: I Voted for Kodos, The Crest, Plunket, Mighty Short Bus, DJ Jeremy Thomas, Paper Tiger and Depth Beyond Depth. View video of the announcement below. >More
 Halloween map finalized for State Street

The city's plans for the Halloween party on State Street -- scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 28 -- are nearly complete. On Friday, Oct. 6, the Parks Department published a map detailing the infrastructure for the party that the public will see. "Ticket locations, the glass-free zone, fencing, and the music stages are final," says parks superintendent Jim Morgan. "There may be one more revision to the plan the week prior to the event based on a meeting we had with the police, engineering, streets and parks departments on Monday morning." However, from a public standpoint, what is depicted in the map is final. >More
 How Halloween on State St. was rebranded as Freakfest

Thousands of students joined the "Move Halloween to Langdon 2006" Facebook online networking group to have a say in Madison's Halloween. Now, the Facebook group has evolved into a registered student organization called Halloween Action Committee, to help plan for the event. >More
 Setting the stage for music at the State Street Halloween party

"We did a walk-through today," says event promoter John Kunz, who is organizing the entertainment for the officially unofficial Madison Halloween party on State Street on the night of Saturday, Oct. 28. On Wednesday, Oct. 4, Kunz and city staff toured the State Street areas slated for his stages. "There"s going to be one by the Capitol, and another on Gorham right by Pizzeria Uno," he explains. >More
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