Overcrowding in Rosie’s causes diner to close

Sean Joseph

Rosie’s Diner, attractive to students because of its late-night hours and greasy food, is a popular after-party hang out. Saturday, between 300 and 400 people were in line to order food by 1:30 a.m.

Rosie’s Diner shut down in those early hours of the morning in the best interest of public safety, said Deb White, the Dining Services manager working at the time.

A couple people started fighting outside of Wright Hall, said officer Heather Prusha of the Kent State Police Department.

“The fight stayed outside the entire time and ended as quickly as it began,” Prusha said.

An Omega Psi Phi party was held in the Student Center Ballroom. When it finished, many in attendance went to Rosie’s, said Kareem Mitchell, the publicity chair for Black United Students.

Rosie’s began to get crowded, White said. The Tri-Towers rotunda was filled beyond capacity.

“Everybody goes to Rosie’s after parties all the time because it’s the only place open,” Mitchell said. “It was so crowded. If I were the manager, I would have shut it down, too.”

The police called and suggested it was in the diner’s best interest to close down because of safety and fire code regulations, White said. Rosie’s was closed between 2 and 3 a.m. after all the food orders that had already been placed were filled.

White said she did not see violence or any other problems, and police dispersed the crowd quickly, even though some people were mad about the unexpected closing.

Crowding has been an issue lately at Rosie’s on “big bar nights,” White said. Dining Services has hired police officers to patrol the area on Thursday and Friday nights.

Despite crowding being an issue, it is rare that Rosie’s closes, said Cindy Nichols, general manager of Dining Services.

Nothing violent happened at the ballroom or Rosie’s, Mitchell said. Rosie’s Diner closed due to overcrowding a few times last year, too.

Contact safety reporter Sean Joseph at [email protected].