Mess shaved from parade route: tradition sliced, students pissed

In Campus NewsLeave a Comment

Reading Time: 2 minutes

By Natalie Armstrong

Ryerson’s messy parade tradition has been sliced.

Shaving cream has been banned from this year’s parade after foamy fun expanded into unruly bedlam during last year’s parade. In addition to shaving cream, people along the parade route were covered in everything from chocolate syrup to eggs to urine fired from water guns.

There were reports a man got having cream in his eye shortly after a cataract operation, a woman on her way to a job interview was covered in cream, and a tour bus of senior citizens was bombarded with water balloons and water gun-fillings.

Ryerson had to deal with complaints from pedestrians and businesses, ranging from letters and phone calls to dry-cleaning and car-wash bills. Some people threatened legal action.

“We nearly lost the parade this year,” said RyeSAC president Victoria Bowman.

To combat the problem, students will have their ammunition confiscated by parade marshals this year.

Last year’s parade chaos resulted in the formation of a Risk Management Committee who decided sacrificing the parade route down Yonge Street.

So the call to ban shaving cream, along with water guns and water balloons was made.

“This is it. If it doesn’t go well this year, you’re looking at a different orientation event for next year,” said Bowman. “The parade would be horrible to lose.”

This year will be the 38th annual Ryerson Parade and Picnic. More than 3,000 students take part in the romp down Yonge Street to the ferries every year.
Last year, RyeSac didn’t work closely enough with police, nor did they have enough parade marshals, according to Bowman. “Some of the marshalls were drunk and using water gun themselves,” said Bowman.

Students were also sent on the parade route half-an-hour early, which didn’t give marshals enough time to get to their stations along the route.

This year 35 parade marshals trained to confiscate any banned substances will be stationed throughout the parade.

Last year’s problems were amplified when RyeSAC gave out 200 water fund to the students and the Association of Collegiate Entrepreneurs sold shaving cream at the start of the parade route.

Despite the restriction on messy toys, Bowman believes the parade and picnic will still be a terrific orientation event.

“It’s one of the best things students can do to get their year going and get to know people,” said Bowman. “I think students will come (to the parade and picnic) , projectiles or no projectiles.”

Soshana Mensher, president of the engineering students society, said those who know about the restrictions are upset.

“A parade isn’t a parade without the mess,” said Mensher, although she is hoping most will abide by the rules and leave the shaving cream by their sinks.

This is the second time restrictions have been placed on the event. In 1983, alcohol was restricted from the picnic. The previous tear an intoxicated student died after diving off of the ferry.

Leave a Comment