Lawrence police prepare downtown for Jayhawk win

Posted at 7:46 PM, Mar 23, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-26 18:28:55-04

As the Kansas Jayhawks prepare for Thursday night's March Madness game, Lawrence police are trying to stay one step ahead. 

"We are as ready as we can be," said neighborhood resource officer Drew Fennelly of the Lawrence Police Department. 

On Wednesday Fennelly and other officers spent the day walking down Massachusetts Street, going from business to business to talk about a temporary ordinance if the Jayhawks win. 

"Most of the focus is right here on the 800 block [of Massachusetts Street]. We're asking restaurants, bars, coffee houses downtown not to serve anything in glass or ceramics," said Fennelly. 

If the Jayhawks win Thursday and advance to the Elite 8, a glass ordinance will temporarily go into effect. 

  • It would begin Saturday at noon and last until Monday at 6 a.m.   
  • All glass bottles and containers would be prohibited in the public right of way downtown. 
  • Anyone violating the ordinance could face a fine of $100. 

"We don't want glass coming out on the street when we have an exodus of people coming out. When it becomes a projectile or it shatters on the ground or is coming from the window, it can do a lot of damage," said Fennelly. 

The last time the Jayhawks were in the Final Four, tens of thousands of fans flooded Massachusetts Street. 

Nick Renard, the manager of RnD Corner Grille, hopes enforcing the glass ordinance will help keep crowds at bay and protect his restaurant. 

"I think you are just taking away ammunition. I would hate to walk in the next day and not have a window," he said. 

Lawrence police are "strongly encouraging" businesses to serve all drinks in plastic cups, even inside the restaurants and bars. 

"It's definitely March Madness but we want it to be a safe March Madness," said Fennelly.