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Denver Police Prepare To Protect The More Than 100,000 People Expected Downtown For Parade Of Lights

DENVER (CBS4) - More than 100,000 people will line the streets of Downtown Denver Saturday for the Parade of Lights. The holiday parade tragedy in Wisconsin last month has led to increased safety measures at parades nationwide.

Denver Police says the department has taken additional measures for this year's parade to ensure a safe event.

(credit: CBS)

"Every year we have security and police meetings about a month out and then again a few days out. We work very closely with the Denver Police Department and several private security teams. We always have plans in place. And this year, Denver Police are upping their security even more but they always have layers and layers of security," said Sharon Alton, Senior Vice President of the Downtown Denver Partnership.

DPD says they have an extensive plan for the parade. For safety reasons, DPD does not disclose specific ways in which they are working to ensure safety for the event or the number of officers working. DPD says they will have the appropriate staffing and resources available to address issues that may arise.

Physical barriers will also be used to keep parade-goers safe along the route.

"We have very large cement blockades and then other large trucks. Again, Denver Police doesn't disclose which streets they put those on, but they blocked those throughout downtown," said Alton.

The city says it's been monitoring activity ahead of the parade and they're ready to respond to potential incidents. The Office of Emergency Management is prepared to activate if necessary.

"The crowds tend to be really packed in at the beginning of the route, which is along 17th street and Arapahoe. It tends to thin out a little bit on 15th Street towards the end. That's usually where people go when they want a thinner crowd," suggested Alton.

DPD encourages eventgoers to immediately report to police any suspicious activity they may observe; if you see something, say something.

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