Campus Dining's Director of Marketing and Sustainability, Ken Oldehoff, who oversees the Mug, wrote the following:
"There is a sign posted at the entrance to Matthew's Mug stating that the Mug will close for the evening if there is illegal activity. Stealing beer is illegal... If patrons act in a manner where we can't be certain that they are acting according to the law, we will close the bar... If the [town] or state police [were] to discover underage drinking in the Mug, they could arrest the bartender. So you buy a beer and pass it off to your friend and a college employee is arrested for a misdemeanor, wonderful. Don't blame the bartender because certain people act like spoiled fools."
Meanwhile, Julia Eicher '11, the Treasurer for 2011 and one of the event's organizers, had this to say:
"Punishing everyone because of the actions of one person is juvenile and disrespectful of the integrity of the majority of the student body. This incident was unfortunate and disrespectful, but so was the reaction of the bartender. It is entirely possible to close the bar and keep the Mug open- any concern regarding illegal activity involving the alcohol available there can be resolved by pulling the metal gate down over the bar and closing it up. This event was the result of a huge amount of hard work and planning, not to mention a pretty large amount of money. As Betty said, it was wonderful to finally see a group equally composed of freshmen-seniors having fun together and ruining the whole night because one person did something stupid is really just another way to make the student body feel like children. There is a tremendous lack of respect on this campus- in both directions."
The student liaison to the Mug, Paul Noonan '10, declined to comment until he meets with administration to discuss the incident. He did, however, email us the following statement:
"As the Student Mug Liaison, I highly encourage students to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with their questions, comments, and concerns about the incident on Saturday or the Mug in general. It is my job to accurately present the student opinion, so feel free to voice whatever you're feeling."
Update: Paul Noonan '10 just sent us the following statement:
"The appropriate administrative parties have been made aware of the angry reaction to Saturday night's closure. Meetings will continue throughout the week to figure out why this happened and what can be done in the future.
Also, the sign posted on the door of Matthew's Mug states:
If there is any evidence of illegal activity in Matthew's Mug, the bar will be closed for the evening [emphasis is Paul's].
The definition of bar could be considered a gray area, and is also being discussed."