SEASIDE HEIGHTS – Borough police called in help from surrounding towns as a crowd numbering in the thousands descended on the area for an event organized by popular YouTube group the Nelk Boys, authorities said.
Seaside Heights Police Chief Thomas Boyd said police were performing “crowd control” and as of 8:30 p.m. the situation remained peaceful and under control. Boyd estimated the crowd had grown to a “couple thousand.”
Authorities warned of road closures in the area.
Videos posted on Snapchat showed large groups of rowdy young people gathered in the streets of the borough. Many of the videos also showed a large police presence.
The night appeared to have gotten more tense as it wore on. Police from several surrounding towns swarmed Seaside Heights in an attempt to maintain order.
One video posted on social media showed officers wearing what appeared to be riot shields confronting revelers.
There were incidents of people throwing bottles at police, but for the most part the crowd remained under control, authorities said.
The Nelk Boys, a Canadian YouTube channel known for posting prank and party videos, posted on social media that the event was timed with the launch of new merchandise, basketball and baseball jerseys, from the group.
The group posted a video on Twitter in which they claimed they were being kicked out of the famed “Jersey Shore” house, which at one time housed cast members of the MTV reality show that made Seaside Heights famous around the world as a nightlife hotspot. The video showed a large group of people waiting outside the home being held back by police.
Disclaimer: Videos contain vulgar language.
Earlier in the day, the group posted a video from outside the home showing them popping champagne bottles.
The group, which has 5.71 million subscribers on YouTube, was sanctioned by the streaming giant last week after they were accusing of throwing huge parties at Illinois State University, BuzzFeed reported. The parties were being investigated by the university as a possible violation of coronavirus rules.
The Nelk Boys previously protested COVID-19 restrictions in Los Angeles as part of a YouTube “stunt,” according to the report.
A YouTube spokesperson told BuzzFeed the group’s channel would be temporarily demonetized and their behavior was “creating a widespread public health risk.”
More: Man drowns in Lavallette as rip currents batter Jersey Shore
More: Jersey Shore: Snooki, RHONJ stars hit Barnegat Bay, Real Housewives cast films in Brielle