Halloween Campaigns Dissuade Out of Town Visitors and Advocate a United Isla Vista


Montana MacLachlan

Isla Vista Halloween is apparently #notworthit.

A forlorn young woman dressed in costume holds a sign that reads “lost my phone, lost my friends, lost my ride.” This image is part of a recent campaign to highlight safety measures and strongly discourage out of town visitors for the upcoming holiday.

“Keep IV Safe” is predominantly a social media campaign developed by the Office of Student Life and Office of Public Affairs. According to George Foulsham, OPA Director of News and Media Relations, the campaign intends to “promote safety and discourages visitors from outside the area from coming.”

According to the Assistant Dean of Students, Lisa Smith, the campaign sent out more than 100 letters to California colleges, universities, and high schools along the Central Coast asking them to inform their students not to travel to Isla Vista for Halloween.

“The message is also being communicated via ads on Pandora and in local buses which cost a few thousand dollars (supported by gift funds from donors interested in promoting safety in Isla Vista),” said Foulsham in an email statement. “We will also be reaching out to regional college student publications to see if we can get additional coverage in their digital properties.”

“Keep IV Local” is another, similar campaign, that was developed by the Associated Students Office of the President and the External Vice President of Local Affairs.  

“Both [campaign] goals are to focus on keeping outsiders out-of-town, but the AS-affiliated ‘Keep IV Local’ is more of a year-round effort that focuses on local businesses and community events,” stated ASOP Committee Development Coordinator, Louis Mariano.

According to Itxy Quintanilla, the Executive Assistant in the Office of the EVPLA, “Keep IV Local” focuses on community cohesion.

“Instead of saying ‘don’t bring people to IV,’ we are using an approach that hopefully makes people want to support and care enough about their community to make it the actual IV that everyone knows and loves,” Quintanilla said.

The goal of “Keep IV Local”, is according to Quintanilla, “to promote a community that cares about where they live in order to prevent future danger.”

Photo Courtesy of Keep Isla Vista Safe