Parents Called The Police Because Their Teens Were Getting Sunburned At TanaCon
"Hotel staff locked themselves in their offices and called the police department for assistance."
"TanaCon," the alternative convention to the massive annual YouTube gathering Vidcon, was shut down on its first day Friday and canceled before its second day after police were called over concerns about an unruly teenage crowd.
The gathering, organized by YouTuber Tana Mongeau, was held at the Anaheim Marriott Suites hotel in Garden Grove, California.
The Garden Grove Police Department told BuzzFeed News on Tuesday that it received calls from parents worried about "heat related exposure" to their teenage children, and from hotel staff, who had locked themselves in their offices, away from what became an unruly crowd.
Over the weekend, Mongeau repeatedly implied that the event was shut down because of crowd size, saying that 15,000 unregistered guests showed up at her convention. She also tweeted that the fire marshal played a role in ending the event.
In a statement provided to BuzzFeed News, the Garden Grove Police Department said the crowd size was around 4,000 to 5,000 people and that the fire department did not shut down the event.
Neither Good Times Live, the company that helped to organize the event, nor Mongeau immediately returned BuzzFeed News' requests for comment.,
Authorities said that around 4,000 tickets were sold for the event and that the ballrooms where the convention was held "could hold a maximum of 1,150 people."
"The organizers planned to move the crowd in and out of the venue to allow all attendees the opportunity to participate in the event," the police statement read.
Hotel staff and event security could not adequately wrangle the fans, police said, and the department received calls from staff while they were locked away, hiding from the crowd.
"As the crowd grew in the lobby, hotel staff and event security could not gain compliance from the fans," it said.
"Hotel staff said the crowd became unruly and began climbing on furniture," it continued. "Hotel staff locked themselves in their offices and called the police department for assistance."
Several hotel supervisors along with roughly 20 police officers then responded to the convention Monday afternoon and dispersed the crowd.
One teenager went to the hospital "for minor injuries."
"The hotel ballrooms and lobby were over-capacity and one 14-year-old female was injured by the crowd," the police said.
The police also received calls from concerned parents.
"The event did not start on time as planned and the police department began receiving phone calls from concerned parents," the statement read.
"The parents said they were worried about their teenagers standing in line for 4–6 hours and suffering from heat related exposure."
Parents additionally said that their kids lacked water.
Teens told BuzzFeed News on Monday that TanaCon was a total disaster. They said they were forced to wait for hours outside in the sun to enter the convention, and complained of disappointing goodie bags and a lack of activities within the event.
One attendee, 17-year-old Dawn Morante from Los Angeles, said Monday that she waited more than six hours in the sun, and never made it inside the hotel for the convention.
"TanaCon was the scariest and the worst experience of my life," she said.