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California shooting raises security questions at Ingham County Fair

shooting fair.JPG
Posted at 8:30 PM, Jul 29, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-29 21:44:50-04

LANSING, Mich. — Hot dogs, elephant ears, and fried Oreos are a hot topic at the fair. But so is safety following northern California shooting on Sunday.

Every year thousands attend the Ingham County Fair in Mason. News 10 talked to the Sheriff’s Office about security concerns for the week.

Walking through one of the three entrances you won’t see metal detectors or people sifting through bags, but Ingham County Sheriff's Office says while you may not be able to see them, they’re still watching.

Like many in the community, a local mom and her kids tell News 10 they have come to the Ingham County Fair for years.

“We love about coming to the fair, the rides, the food, the animals, it’s. He shows pigs, this is her first year showing pigs. So we really get into it, we stay the whole week,” she said.

There’s a lot to do, a lot to see and a lot to eat.

“Turn up, turn out, yeah, bring them to Ingham,” she said.

But with so much going on and so many people going in and out of the fairgrounds, there’s always the question of safety.

At least three people were killed, including two children, and 12 others were wounded in a shooting at the Gilroy Garlic Festival in California on Sunday. The event escalated security fears around the country.

“The events that take place around our country try to do that, but we remain vigilant,” said Sergeant Jeff Weiss, Ingham County Emergency Management Manager. “We put every resource we can into keeping the fair safe.”

Although no visible security measures at the gate, Sergeant Weiss says there are less obvious things happening around the clock.

“Those are in place. I won’t discuss what the actual procedures are going to be but it is going to be a safe and secure environment,” said Sergeant Weiss.

As far as visible security measures, those are in place at the fair as well. However, he says they are consistent with previous years security.

“The gates are all manned by fair staff, we have our Special Deputy Unit on staff, they’ll be here from open to close. They’ll be here 24 hours a day on the grounds staff and we have first responders that’ll respond to medical emergencies,” said Sergeant Weiss.

Fairgrounds Event Director Lindsey McKeever says she hopes people don’t allow fear to take over so that the Ingham County Fair can remain a community staple.

“This is just good ole fashion family fun so we encourage everyone to come out unplug from their cell phones, unplug from their ipads, come out and enjoy the beautiful weather and the beautiful fair. We worked really hard to put this on for our community and we just hope that everyone can enjoy it,” said McKeever.

The Sheriff’s Office wants to make sure people know they can help. If you see something make sure police know so that they can take care of it.
They are also asking Fair attendees to sign up for their emergency alerts. You can do that by texting “FAIR19” to 888777.
They are also asking Fair attendees to sign up for their emergency alerts. You can do that by texting “FAIR19” to 888777.
The Fair goes on throughout the week and will end on Saturday.
The Fair goes on throughout the week and will end on Saturday.

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