RENO, NV - Security measures in place at this year's Boston Marathon were not enough to prevent the tragic bombing. In light of that, event planners across the country are reviewing safety practices, and once again tightening the reigns. That includes Reno River Festival on the Truckee.
Special Events Program Manager for the City of Reno, Alexis Hill says this year attendees will have to enter over one of two bridges on the north side of Wingfield Park. In addition, security personnel will be checking bags. On the south side of the park, traffic will be blocked at Court Street and no one will be permitted to enter. With 30,000 people expected to attend, that means it will take a little more time and planning to get to the event.
Reno Police Sergeant Joe Robinson says lessons have been learned from the Boston Bombing, but security is an ongoing process. "We obviously share information as a law enforcement community nationwide," he says "so the lessons that we're learning from Boston, and right here in reno in 2011, we learn those lessons and we move forward from them." Friday, even as crews set up barricades and tents - officers walked through taking stock of the the park.
Of course, police will be keeping an eye out for suspicious packages. That's where the public can help. Robinson says most people are not going to leave a purse or bag unattended for a long period of time. If you see something that doesn't look right, mention it to an officer or security guard.
During the River Festival, Arlington will be closed from Court to First Street. If you are attending the event, plan to park on the north side of the river, so that you can walk in. If you're not attending the festival, definitely take alternate route like Keystone through town.