3 U. of Michigan Fraternities Wreak Havoc at Two Ski Resorts

Three University of Michigan fraternities have a lot of explaining to do after causing thousands of dollars worth of damage to two ski resorts.

The Sigma Alpha Mu chapter stayed at the Treetops Resort in Gaylord last weekend and reportedly caused $50,000 worth of damage according to Barry Owens, General Manager of Treetops.

“We had a group of a fraternity that was visiting and had an excessive party and did damage on the resort. Food, beer, alcohol, the walls, carpet damage, ceiling broken down and furniture damage,” he said.

There were well over 120 people spread out over 45 rooms at the resort. Noting that the behavior of the young men and women was getting out of control, Owens said “We tried to address it with them but we made a mistake and took these people at their word when they said they would change their behavior.”

The employees at Treetops Resort have been pulling 16 hour days trying to clean up the destruction left in the wake of the Sigma Alpha Mu members.

Owen’s went on to say, “They had a series of rooms, a couple floors of rooms, obviously things got out of hand. We estimate the cleanup and damage is around $50,000.”

The two other fraternities involved in the raucous weekend were not names, but reports of the damage caused to the 12 condos they stayed in at Boyne Highlands was.

General Manager of Boyne Highlands, Mike Chumbler, said “We’re the stewards of the property and it’s disturbing to us and we need to protect their investments. We are following up with the U of M and they promised us swift action. We assessed a significant fee when they checked out not knowing what’s in repair but we wanted to protect our owners and ourselves.”

University of Michigan officials were less than pleased with the actions of all three fraternities as is evident by the harsh words written in the statement released. It read:

“We are very disappointed in the behavior of some of our student during a weekend visit to two northern Michigan ski resort. I want to assure you that the organizations and the individuals involved will be held accountable for their actions. While we are still gathering information, we understand that the damage at Treetops Resort and Boyne Highlands is expected to total in the thousands of dollars. U-M staff members in the office of Greek Life have begun meeting with the presidents of the fraternities and sororities involved. We expect full payment for all damages. The local Greek chapters are in the process of notifying their organizations, which could bring their own sanctions. We are confident the national organizations will take this seriously and will work through this situation in collaboration with the university. Additionally, these incidents will be addressed through the Greek Life student judiciary process on our campus.”

The president of Sigma Alpha Mu wasn’t able to stave off making a public statement as word of the damage caused to Treetops Resort spread quickly, garnering media attention. The email he sent out read:

“We are embarrassed and ashamed of the behavior of a few of our chapter members at a Treetops Resort over the weekend of January 17-18. This behavior is inconsistent with the values, policies and practices of this organization. Our chapter accepts full responsibility for this incident and we will be working with the management of resort to pay for all damages and cleaning costs. We will work within our own organization and with university officials to hold those who are responsible accountable for their actions.”

The actions of those involved are being investigated by the Michigan State Police and may result in criminal and/or civil charges being brought to those found responsible.

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