Hosting a Party

If you plan to have a party or large gathering inform your neighbors; give them your name and phone number, and ask that they contact you in case an issue arises or things get noisy. Local ordinances restrict noise after 10:00 pm and excessive noise at any hour.

Avoid hosting a large “blow-out” party that can easily get out of hand. Protect yourself from unintended consequences like seriously drunk guests, upset neighbors, and visits from police. Be aware of non-UCSC people who target student parties with the intention of crashing them, sometimes resulting in property damage. Remember you are responsible for the actions of guests, invited or not.

Tips For Throwing A Responsible Party

  • Use a Guest List
  • Coordinate parking so no cars block neighbor’s property or guests get tickets.
  • Remind guests to be considerate of your neighbors as they leave. Escort them out and make sure no one disturbs your neighbor's property.
  • Lock areas that you do not want people to have access to
  • Do not serve alcohol to minors or obviously intoxicated guests - both are against the law and punishable by expensive fines and jail time.
  • Make sure all guests have a safe ride home (with designated drivers, taxi, etc).
  • Have phone numbers for taxi services readily available.
  • Watch for aggressive behaviors and call police for help if an individual gets out of control.
  • Watch for alcohol poisoning and call 911 for an ambulance if anyone needs to go to the hospital.
  • Promptly clean up yards and street of any trash from the party.
  • Check in afterwards with the neighbors to make sure they didn’t experience any problems.

UCSC Student Health Outreach and Promotion (SHOP) offers suggestions for hosting safer parties and recognizing signs of alcohol poisoning.

Loud and Unruly Gathering "Party Policy"

In response to growing problems with out-of-control house parties, Santa Cruz City and County have passed ordinances which provide for both civil penalties (full cost of police, fire, and other emergency response) and criminal fines.

Santa Cruz City Loud and Unruly Gathering Ordinance Fines and Penalties:

  • First violation: $250 fine plus administrative costs.
  • Second violation: $500 fine plus administrative costs.
  • Third violation: $1,000 fine plus administrative costs and a misdemeanor on your record.

Santa Cruz County Fines:

  • $75 per hour for every deputy who responds to the second alert with a one hour minimum charge per officer.

Students are also often subject to student disciplinary action for violations. These allegations are adjudicated by the UCSC Office of Student Conduct and Community Standards.

See Also