Hell of a hangover: 3,000-strong Facebook party leaves Dutch town ravaged (VIDEO, PHOTOS)
A Dutch girl had a most memorable, if unpleasant, birthday party when some 3,000 people showed up in her small hometown. The crowd – attracted by her invitation, which accidentally went viral – looted shops and clashed with riot police.
Six people were reportedly injured overnight in the town of Haren in the north of the country, as violence raged across the normally sleepy community. A car was set on fire, several shops looted and street signs and lampposts vandalized.
Dutch police eventually broke up the crowd, which was throwing stones, bottles and flower pots at the officers. Some 20 people were arrested.
The rioting was the culmination of an online campaign, which started when a girl posted a video invitation to her 16th birthday party on her Facebook page and forgot to mark it as private.
The news went viral, and several sites dedicated to the forthcoming event popped up. The party was dubbed “Project X Haren” by some, in reference to a US-made comedy film about a similarly disastrous incident.
By this week, some 30,000 people signed up to the invitation to the town, which has a population of 18,000. The girl’s family went into hiding as the police braced for Friday’s invasion of party-goers.
Previously “Project X” parties have run riot in different parts of the world, including Germany, Australia and the United States. In one incident in America, teens caused damage of up to $100,000 when they broke into an unoccupied Texas home.
Chairs burn in the northern Dutch town of Haren late on September 21, 2012 (AFP Photo / ANP / Catrinus Van Der Veen)
Riot police officers stand next to a man lying on the ground as they went into action in the northern Dutch town of Haren late on September 21, 2012 (AFP Photo / ANP / Catrinus Van Der Veen)
The teenager who send a public Facebook party invite (R) leaves her house with her mother in Haren, on September 21, 2012 (AFP Photo / ANP / Catrinus Van Der Veen)