However, Mecimore noted that in previous years most incidents occurred after the event ended, as people moved to bars and parties.
Mecimore said the event ended earlier to make it more accessible to families, but he could not say if more families attended this year's event.
"We get a lot of feedback every year from parents about bringing their kids to the first part of it, and we wanted to give them that time," Mecimore said. "But we also have the responsibility to ensure safety and we realize that as it gets later, people drink more and worse things happen."
Twelve-year-old Durham resident Feliciano Carranza, dressed as a wolf, came to the event with his family for the second year in a row.
"I don't like all the crowds, but it's fun to watch," Carranza said.
UNC-Chapel Hill senior Jordan Warren, dressed as a carrot, said he was unhappy with the event ending early this year.
"I think people should have a little more time here," Warren said. "This is the only forum where people who don't know each other can just get together and get to know each other. You get to see the most diverse crowd possible and I wish it would last longer, but I get why it's ending early with everything that's happened."
Mecimore said he could not say whether the early closing time was connected to the low number of incidents this year. He said he was unaware of any complaints about the event ending one hour earlier than last year.
UNC Chapel Hill junior Allison Hammond said she felt a stronger police presence and a larger crowd than in her previous two years on Franklin Street.
"The street closing early was a little upsetting because we had to plan our night around Franklin Street closing, but I understand where they're coming from," Hammond said.
Soniel Schaefer, a student at UNC Greensboro, came to the event with Hammond.
"I think that in light of the police brutality that has happened within the past year, it's interesting what the sequence of events will be tonight, given the number of cops out here and the number of intoxicated people out here as well," Schaefer said.
At 11:00 p.m. officers began to tell people to clear the streets. After five minutes, a line of motorcycles herded people to the sidewalks, followed by officers ordering people to disperse. A school bus full of state troopers drove through the street in case further crowd control was necessary, but they did not exit the bus. Once the crowd was contained to the sidewalks, street cleaning vehicles blasted the street with water.
Police reopened the streets to regular traffic at 11:55 p.m.
"Over the last several years since 2008 the crowd size has gotten smaller and the number of issues that we've had has been fewer," Mecimore said.
"Our message throughout has been to drink responsibly if you're over 21, don't drink at all if you're not. We're hoping that people have done that and it looks like that so far."