photojournal

20 August 2002
 
It's that time of year again when punks young and old jump in, decorate, or highly engineer shopping karts for downhill travel in the mid night.
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This year's field seemed to be 3 times larger than the previous with the crowd growing proportionally. After initial friction at the starting line with Ann Arbor's finest the race started and hundreds of people tumbled from downtown to the railroad tracks. The Ann Arbor Police Department showed up at the finish line as quickly as possible and blocked off the north-bound lanes in the hopes of preventing kart-car incidents. The crowd shouted, cheered, and mingled for about a half hour, slowly trickling away. The police did the same as more pressing issues popped up in town. The last three lit cars left together and just as decisively most of the crowd dispersed.

There was one lone car across the street with it's lights off. I stopped to compliment the officer in the car on their levelheaded response to the throbbing masses and he responded that he thought this was a good thing. They were happy as long as the kids had their fun, didn't break things, and then went home. Seems fair to me. It was a pity, but unsurprising, that some of the kids felt the need to taunt the police. Thankfully the officers were smarter than their assailants.

I can't even imagine how next year will be manageable if the grow rate of karts and crowd continues.