Boulder might crack down on front lawn beer pong cleanup

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BOULDER, Colo. -- A beer pong battle is heating up in Boulder as residents in the University Hill neighborhood say the leftover trash is creating a bad look. And one city council member is gauging interest to see if a new ordinance is necessary.

“There are plenty of studies that say if you have broken windows or litter everywhere that it affects people’s behavior,” Boulder councilman Andrew Shoemaker said. “They tend to litter if they see nobody is keeping up the property.”

The issue is not whether beer pong should be allowed on front lawns. It’s whether people are cleaning up after themselves.

“People put the (beer pong) table out, they leave it out, it gets rained on, it rots,” Shoemaker said. “It’s there in the winter through the snow and then in the summer. It’s just unattractive.”

Some students in the neighborhood agreed that it would tidy up the neighborhood and they should keep things clean. Others said it is their property and they should be able to “decorate” however they would like.

“If it took a lot of city staff time, it’s not something that even I would be interested in pursuing,” Shoemaker said. “But if it’s something as simple as adding a few words to our existing couch ordinance and improved the neighborhood and made people feel better about the neighborhood, then I think it’s something we should look at.”

Boulder’s couch ordinance has been in effect since 2002. It’s a $100 fine for a first time offense for furniture left in a front lawn.

Shoemaker said community feedback will determine the next step in the potential beer pong table ordinance.